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Rethinking the ‘harm’ in harm reduction movements of drugs and health 
Nancy Campbell (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute)
Kari Lancaster (Goldsmiths University of London)
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Kiran Pienaar (Deakin University)
Traditional Open Panel
Theater 1, NU building
Thursday 18 July, -, -
Time zone: Europe/Amsterdam
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Short Abstract:

We invite papers that rethink the knowledges and discourses of social movements for ‘harm reduction’ in the area of drugs and health. In the face of decolonial imperatives to move away from “damage-centred” narratives, do we--in effect-do harm when we make ‘harm’ central to our narratives?

Long Abstract:

This open panel invites papers that rethink the knowledges and discourses of social movements for ‘harm reduction’ in the face of the decolonial imperative to move away from “damage-centred” narratives. In the drug policy field, harm reduction movements are often said to have originated in The Netherlands, in other European countries, and to have migrated to North America. Yet such movements flourish elsewhere. How do our origin stories shape our present realities? Is it time to rethink the work of ‘harm’ not only in our narratives but in motivating participation, the shape that participation takes, and the work involved in documenting ‘harm’ through research that is designed to document ‘harm’ and to make evidence? When we make ‘harm’ central to our narratives, do we—in effect—do harm?

The study of social movements and community-engaged STS offers direct invitations to bring our commitments into our scholarship, and ask how the work of STS converges with work in the world. How have the multiple effects of these engagements fed back into the conceptual work of the field? How have STS concepts migrated into drug policy reform movements, harm reduction organizations, intermediary institutions? Finally, what has the institutionalization of harm reduction at various levels of local, state, regional, and national governance meant for rethinking ‘harm’ in context?

We invite proposals for papers and dialogue sessions that focus on rethinking 'harm' in the context of drug user health, 'recovery' and political and cultural solidarities.

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -
Session 2 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -