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Faculty & Research

Sarah Ahmed

Profile picture of Sarah Ahmed
Graduate Employee
Office: 614 PLC
Research Interests: Gender and development, global health, agency & empowerment, state autonomy and globalization


I analyze changes that occur in women’s lived experiences as a result of the implementation of global health development agendas in developing countries. My current project examines how gender and gendered relationships are affected locally as a consequence of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative in Pakistan. Central to this initiative are female health workers that are responsible to give Polio drops within their communities. Yet their voices are often overlooked or unrepresented in state and organizational accounts. How does an association to a transnational project, funded by global agencies such as the World Health Organization and the Gates Foundation, affect a female health worker's social status and sense of agency/self? How are these processes affecting the ways in which gender is constructed in the communities women are working in? Are these processes being taking into account at the global and state level conversations of global health projects? My project crosscuts literature of global health and development, state and globalization, and conversations of agency and empowerment. I approach these questions and literature using discourse methodology, in-depth interviews and participant observations. 

Born and raised in Lahore, Sarah received her BA in Political Science from Hiram College, Ohio, and an MAIS in South Asia from University of Washington in Seattle, before joining the Sociology graduate program in the University of Oregon, Eugene. When not doing research, writing, grading or catching up on sleep, she enjoys good food and a cup of chai.