Special Issue CFP: Contextualizing Care in Cultures: Perspectives on Cross-Cultural and International Health and Medical Communication

Issue Editors:
Kirk St.Amant, Louisiana Tech University
Elizabeth L. Angeli, Marquette University 

Proposals Due: 22 May 2018
Publication Date: Spring/Summer 2019 (tentative)

The interconnected nature of modern society means the exchange of health and medical communication often takes place in a range of international and local contexts. The objective of such interactions is to offer effective care – or how to engage in practices designed to maintain or return individuals to a particular level of health and wellness. These exchanges, however, must often traverse a range of cultural, linguistic, and geopolitical contexts to transfer health and medical information to multiple audiences across contexts including to

  • The healthcare professionals who provide care
  • The public health and health literacy educators who educate others on care and caregiving
  • The patients and populations who receive or must participate in such care

To this end, care-related information must be contextualized – or adapted to address the factors affecting how care is perceived and administered in different international and intercultural contexts. This special issue focuses on identifying, understanding, and addressing such dynamics.


The purpose of this special issue is to present ideas that health and medical communicators can use to contextualize care-related information for different cultural and national settings. The idea is to identify factors that can affect the communication of care-related information across cultures in different international, regional, and local contexts as well as present frameworks and/or approaches for engaging in such contextualization of care-related content and communication.

The guest editors of this special issue invite proposals for shorter entries (i.e., 2,500 words – not including references) that provide ideas on how health and medical communicators might approach or address the process of contextualizing care-related communication and content for different cultures.

Because this special issue will be published with the online journal Present Tense, submissions can include entries done in a variety of media. For this reason, we welcome proposals for entries that would be in video, audio, or other non-print formats.


Topics of interest for this special issue include (but are not limited to) those that address the following questions:

  • What cultural, linguistic, and geopolitical factors do health and medical communicators need to consider to contextualize care-related content for different cultural and national audiences?
  • What strategies can health and medical communicators use to design care-related materials for the contexts in which individuals from other cultures or in other nations use them?
  • How should health and medical communicators work with translators and localizers to develop care-related materials that can easily be contextualized for other cultures?
  • What factors should health and medical communicators consider when researching the contextualization of care-related content for audiences from other cultures?
  • What steps should health and medical communicators take to collaborate with individuals in other cultures to contextualize materials for audiences from different cultures and nations?
  • What strategies can health and medical communicators use to distribute care-related information via online or social media to users from other cultures or in other nations?
  • How can we train health and medical communicators and practitioners to communicate effectively with patients from other cultures or in other nations?

Through examining questions such as these, prospective authors can advance our understanding of the dynamics affecting health and medical communication in a variety of international and intercultural contexts.


Individuals should submit a 250-300 word proposal that notes

  • The submitter’s name and contact email
  • The title of the proposed entry
  • The overall topic/focus of the proposed article
  • The approach or method the proposed article will take to examine this overall topic
  • The connection of the focus and approach/method to the theme of this special issue
  • The methods readers can use to apply ideas to health and medical communication practices
  • If the proposed piece uses multimedia instead of/in addition to written text, include a description of the media and how it strengthens the piece

In citing sources in proposals, follow MLA 8th ed. citation style.

Proposals should be submitted as a .doc file emailed to the two guest editors at and; the subject line of the related message should read “Present Tense Special Issue Proposal.”


Questions on this special issue or on prospective topics and approaches for submissions should be sent to the guest editors, Kirk St.Amant and Elizabeth Angeli at both and

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