- To generate large, cross-disciplinary projects in Technology and global health with national and international funding.
- To organise Technology and global health internally at SINTEF to make it an operative and flexible collaboration across Business Areas and Departments.
- To develop strategic collaboration with national and international research groups that can complement SINTEF’s expertise, and in particular establish SINTEF/NTNU as the main and leading partnership in Technology and global health in Norway.
While improving health services is an important part of the solution to health problems in low income countries, reducing, eliminating or strengthening factors outside of the health sector that cause or prevent health problems promises to have an even greater positive impact. Sufficient access to clean water and energy, sanitation, generally improved level of living, education, and less exposure to pollution, are key examples of areas in need of solutions beyond the borders of health sciences and practice. Technologies in many different areas are thus of high relevance to ensure good health for all.
The initiative to establish Technology and global health was started in 2019 and was organised as a "cross-disciplinary growth area" at SINTEF during 2020. The area involves a working group comprised of representatives from five different Business Areas in SINTEF: Digital, Industry, Community, Ocean and Energy. The working group is driving a diverse range of activities, including participation in different fora, publishing, searching for relevant funding opportunities, exploring new concepts for cross-disciplinary collaboration in SINTEF, strengthening existing collaboration with NTNU in global health and establishing new partnerships nationally and internationally. Several relevant applications have been submitted. SINTEF was granted a framework agreement with UD/NORAD in Digitalisation and new technologies. Examples of relevant funded projects: Human, technical and political factors for better coordination and support of e-health in Africa (BETTEReHEALTH) (EU), Inclusive Hearing Care for School Children in Tanzania (RCN), rAPID Assistive Technology Assessment (WHO rATA) (WHO), Disinfectants in food production: efficacy towards foodborne bacteria and potential cross-resistance to antibiotics (DisinfectAMR) (RCN), Sustainable water management for resilience to climate change impact on society in South Africa (SUWAM, NFR), Rainwater harvesting (RWH) for resilience to climate change impact on water availability in Ghana (Nordic Development Fund).
Plans for 2021 include (i) finalising an MoU with World Health Organisation, (ii) strengthen collaboration with NTNU, (iii) organise a Global Health Norway conference on Technology and global health in October 2021, and (iv) top-level meeting with NORAD/UD, in addition to further publications and applications.