This discussion will focus on the potential utility of innovative technology to address the governance obstacles to the provision of critical public services. Using the challenge of maternal and child mortality reduction as an illustrative example, this discussion will outline the role political forces and governance failures play in shaping the public infrastructure of service provision and opportunities for reform. Of special focus will be the potential role of technology to create and address these opportunities. While there are numerous efforts underway to use new technologies to enhance the breadth and efficiency of health services in low-income settings, this discussion will focus on how these technologies could be “liberating” by being designed and used to address the political determinants of inadequate public service commitments and capacity.
Dr. Paul Wise is the Richard E. Behrman Professor of Child Health and Society, Professor of Pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine, and Senior Fellow in the Freeman-Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford University. He is Director of the Center for Policy, Outcomes and Prevention and a core faculty of the Centers for Health Policy and Primary Care Outcomes Research, at Stanford University. Dr. Wise has served as Chair of the Steering Committee of the NIH Global Network for Women’s and Children’s Health, a member of the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Service’s Advisory Committee on Genetics, Health and Society and currently serves on the National Advisory Council of the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, NIH. Dr. Wise’s research focuses on U.S and international child health policy, particularly the provision of technical innovation in resource-poor areas of