movement of capital refers to the transferability of money, in its simplest sense, and to the increasing ties that characterize the world’s financial system. The importance of this dimension of globalization is reflected in the fact that the “development of global financial markets” is Soros’ (2002) operational definition of globalization. Thus, when an environmental project is financed in a country by funds from outside that country, it is the result of a global system of finance. This dimension has direct implications for local vector ecologies in the sense that a dam, for example, that is financed from outside the country, and perhaps even planned by a coalition of local and international environmental planners, may then alter the local breeding habitats of potential disease vectors, thereby changing the potential exposure to vectorborne or waterborne diseases.

Yet another dimension of globalization is changes in the locus of power in global decision making. One of the consequences of globalization, many argue, is that some localities are marginalized in their ability to control what happens to local society, and others are made more central and are able to project power over great distances. Society is seen as reflecting this reality in its increasing uniformity, erosion of locally controlled commodities and markets, and general loss of control. It is this dimension that is so politically controversial (e.g., Sassen, 1998) and is responsible for protests at the venues of organizations that are seen as representative of and as advocating increased globalization, such as the 1999 World Trade Organization meeting in Seattle. The process of globalization is nicely summed up by Joseph Stiglitz, former chief economist at The World Bank: “it is the closer integration of the countries and peoples of the world which has been brought about by the enormous reduction of costs of transportation and communication, and the breaking down of artificial barriers to the flows of goods, services, capital, knowledge, and (to a lesser extent) people across borders” (Stiglitz, 2002, p. 9).


Disease ecology explains infectious disease patterns in terms of the interactions of people and the environment. In the broadest sense, a social approach to disease ecology, even as conceived by May (1958), whose disease ecology was more medical than social, views infectious disease patterns as the result of cultural, social, behavioral, environmental, and biological interactions. In a dynamic sense, alterations in disease ecological relationships through environmental modifications therefore could be expected to alter human–vector relationships. The effects of land clearance projects, dam construction, and other environmental modifications can be seen in a number of examples.

Classic geographic disease ecology has developed incrementally since

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