Loading Events

« All Events

November 14 - November 15

Call for Papers – From Influenza to COVID. Continuity and Discontinuity in the Factors of Inequality

Deadline for submission: 30 June 2024

In Europe, the average lifespan has increased from around 47 years in 1900 to nearly 80 years today. Globally, there has been a rise from 46.5 years in 1950 to almost 72 in recent years. However, paradoxically, the 20th century was dubbed the “pandemic century” (Honigsbaum, 2020). The influenza pandemic, one of the most significant mortality crises ever experienced by humanity, marked the beginning of a period that has recently been overshadowed by COVID-19. In between, the AIDS pandemic posed another major challenge. Despite progress and convergence, several deadly episodes have been overlooked by the media and underexplored by the scientific community, such as the Hong Kong influenza in 1968-70.


Although pandemics have existed for centuries, as evidenced by plagues and cholera, globalization and increasing population density and mobility in the last hundred years have created new dynamics of viral exchanges and exposures, resulting in significant differences in the ability to prevent and manage epidemic outbreaks. The resulting spatial and social inequalities are subjects of debate in the scientific community. Exploring these dynamics and their consequences is the goal of the IUSSP Scientific Panel on ‘Epidemics and Contagious Diseases: The Legacy of the Past. The Madrid Workshop aims to contribute to this by focusing on the continuities and discontinuities in factors of inequality.


Epidemic diseases not only expose vulnerabilities but also play a crucial role in shaping social inequalities and reproduction. Researchers can examine the uneven distribution of resources to prevent and manage viruses by considering individual positions in social structures (gender, age, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, etc.), familial dimensions, and environmental or spatial factors. Social norms and policies also influence outcomes. These factors and their interactions may (or may not) be particularly influential during epidemic outbreaks, leading to specific differential mortality rates. The effects on survival can be immediate, but delayed impacts, affecting survivors’ life trajectories and population composition in terms of selection versus fragilization, can also be considered.


Contributions are invited not only on major pandemics but also on overlooked epidemic episodes. Comparisons across space, time, and diseases are encouraged.



Please submit your paper by 30 June 2024 using the IUSSP Abstract Submission Form


Please fill out the form and include:

  • a title
  • a short abstract (150–200 words)



Institute of Economy, Geography and Demography-Center for Human and Social Sciences- Spanish National Research Council (IEGD-CCHS-CSIC), Albasanz Street, 26, Madrid 28037, Spain.



  • Diego Ramiro-Fariñas (Spanish National Research Council, Spain).
  • Michel Oris (Spanish National Research Council, Spain).
  • Alain Gagnon (University of Montreal, Canada).

If you have any questions regarding the workshop, please contact diego.ramiro@cchs.csic.es and michel.oris@cchs.csic.es.
The organizers will be happy to provide catering and lunches, but all other costs are the responsibility of the participants.


Spanish National Research Council, Spain
University of Montreal, Canada


Institute of Economy, Geography and Demography-Center for Human and Social Sciences- Spanish National Research Council (IEGD-CCHS-CSIC)
Albasanz Street 26
Madrid, 28037 Spain
+ Google Map
Scroll to Top