What contribution can International Relations make to the evolving global health agenda?
This article presents two approaches that have dominated International Relations in their approach to the international politics of health. The statist approach, which is primarily security-focused, seeks to link health initiatives to a foreign or defence policy remit. The globalist approach, in contrast, seeks to advance health not because of its intrinsic security value but because it advances the well-being and rights of individuals. This article charts the evolution of these approaches and demonstrates why both have the potential to shape our understanding of the evolving global health agenda. It examines how the statist and globalist perspectives have helped shape contemporary initiatives in global health governance and suggests that there is evidence of an emerging convergence between the two perspectives. This convergence is particularly clear in the articulation of a number of UN initiatives in this area-especially the One World, One Health Strategic Framework and the Oslo Ministerial Declaration (2007) which inspired the first UN General Assembly resolution on global health and foreign policy in 2009 and the UN Secretary-General's note 'Global health and foreign policy: strategic opportunities and challenges'. What remains to be seen is whether this convergence will deliver on securing states' interest long enough to promote the interests of the individuals who require global efforts to deliver local health improvements.