| Seminar für Medien- und Kommunikationswissenschaft

In the footsteps of Albert Schweitzer: Research trip of the Health Communication Working Group to Gabon

Behavioral research must be reliable and locally and culturally grounded. For many years, psychological research was limited to studies from so-called WEIRD societies (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic) and yet generalized to people as a whole. In order to change this biased research practice, international research initiatives are needed that look at the thinking and behavior of people who have not or hardly been represented in psychological research.

In early October, Prof. Dr. Cornelia Betsch, Dr. Mattis Geiger and Dr. Lars Korn visited the Centre de Recherches Médicales de Lambaréné (CERMEL) in Gabon as part of a research trip. CERMEL, one of the leading medical-infectious research institutions in Central Africa, is a long-standing cooperation partner of the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine (BNITM), where Cornelia Betsch has been head of the Health Communication working group for the past year.

Lars Korn, Paul Anthony Mboumessieyi Ngorouma, Pamela Angoissa Minsoko, Mattis Geiger, Cornelia Betsch, Maxime Agnandji Selidji
From left to right: Lars Korn (BNITM), Paul Anthony Mboumessieyi Ngorouma, Pamela Angoissa Minsoko, Mattis Geiger (BNITM), Cornelia Betsch (University of Erfurt/BNITM), Maxime Agnandji Selidji (CERMEL)

The aim of the trip was to discuss research foci and ideas with the other research groups of BNITM and CERMEL and to get to know the medical and social and behavioral science research landscape.

In addition, an intensive working session was held with the Social science research group of CERMEL led by Selidji Todagbe Agnandji, MD, to discuss the joint replication project and how to proceed.

On the trip, we were able to forge valuable partnerships and further internationalize our joint work on Planetary Health Behavior,"

says a delighted Lars Korn, who heads the project in Betsch's group. The teams from BNITM and the University of Erfurt will now continue to work together with the African partner on the implementation of the project and will seek additional partners in the future to replicate psychological research in the field of health communication in other countries.

Albert Schweitzer gravesite
Research trip Gabon


Associated researcher in the Health Communication working group at Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine (BNITM)