« Sustaining the Antibiotic Infrastructure » (STATIC)


Henri Boullier (CNRS, IRISSO)

Marine Al Dahdah (CNRS,IFP)

Nicolas Fortané (INRAE, IRISSO)

Status: Ongoing

Project Details

Department Social Sciences
Duration 6 Year(s)
Funding Agency(ies)

Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR-22-PAMR-007)






French Institute of Pondicherry

Email marine.aldahdah AT ifpindia DOT org

Project Description


The objective of STATIC is to explore the antibiotic infrastructure as it exists today, by studying its strengths and its weaknesses, and to identify innovative ways to fight antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and improve antimicrobial use. To do so, STATIC focuses on the technologies used to measure and control antibiotic use, as well as their effects on resistance, from a social science perspective. Through the analysis of some of these tools (wastewater treatment systems, labels, surveillance devices), STATIC wants to retrace how the One Health approach, which promotes coordination between human, animal and animal health, has been included in concrete instruments for the management of antimicrobials and genes of resistance.

Empirically, the project is structured around 3 case studies that analyze how AMR regulatory technologies set (or manage to transcend) the different boundaries of One Health and thus shape our antibiotic infrastructure: the human/environment boundary, the human/animal boundary, and the animal/environment boundary will be investigated in two regions each (North and South) through investigations in hospitals, farms, and environments in France, the United States, Argentina and India. This project is a unique opportunity to strengthen the community promoting the social sciences of AMR, moving away from behaviorist approaches to study how uses are determined by collective structures such as public policies, markets, organizations.

This research is carried out by a dozen researchers and involves three main research labs:

  • The Institute for Interdisciplinary Research in Social Sciences (IRISSO), whose team will study both the devices used to measure and manage hospital wastewater and label foodstuffs likely to contain residues of antimicrobials.
  • The French Institute of Pondichery (IFP), whose researchers’ investigations will focus on the challenges of AMR and AMU in aquaculture, with a focus on environmental controversies around shrimp farms with intensive use of antibiotics.
  • The Centre for Research on Medicine, Science, Health, Mental Health, and Society (Cermes3), whose members will study the human controversies that have unfolded since the 2000s in the management of AMR, assessing the tools of One Health.

This project will contribute to the interests of stakeholders and institutions concerned by the problem of antibiotic resistance and may encourage the implementation of more effective solutions to fight AMR in a One Health perspective.


In India, animal farming is often presented as the main cause for the development of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) in the environment. On top of being one of the pillars of global pharmaceutical production, India is also one major provider of food animals at the global scale. The importance of pharmaceutical manufacturing and the large activity of animal farming have turned the presence of antibiotic residues and resistant genes in the environment into a worrying phenomenon. Even though measures (monitoring practices) have been included in the national plan to fight against AMR in agriculture and the environment, these topics have remained relatively neglected so far and AMR in animals has increased by 50% since 2000.

Aquaculture constitutes an original and fruitful case-study to investigate how the animal/environment boundary is shaped with regards to AMR management. The direct dissemination of both residues and resistance from pools into rivers favours a situation where technologies, controversies and actors are at the heart of this raising concern that is antimicrobial pollution. In this project, the team from India will focus on the shrimp industry in Tamil Nadu as the major subject for the AMR research.