The Labex Who Am I? co-funded the CNRS 2023 Thematic School entitled “Biological Sex and Gender in Health: Cross-disciplinary Scientific Exchanges between Biological and Sociological Approaches”.

Group photo

The thematic school participants at Aussois, France.

© Claire Rougeulle

The thematic school “Biological Sex and Gender in Health: Scientific Exchanges between Biological and Sociological Approaches” was held from November 19 to 24, 2023, in Aussois, France.

The aims of this thematic school were to:

  • Overcome the compartmentalization and language differences between biology and sociology to engage in multidisciplinary reflection on shared objects of study.
  • To better understand the “other” discipline to overcome the cross-assumptions that may exist or simply the profound misunderstanding we have of our colleagues’ methods, ways of constructing questions and main findings.
  • Accelerate researchers’ awareness of the need to consider biological sex and gender in their research to identify sex-specific physiological and pathological mechanisms and better care for people in health.
  • Encourage the emergence of new, genuinely interdisciplinary projects, or even collaborations, between biology and sociology.


The mornings were devoted to cross-disciplinary presentations, and the afternoons to interactive interdisciplinary workshops (cross-readings and restitutions of articles in the other discipline, design of multi-disciplinary research projects, and “walk and talk” on each other’s tools and working methods).

19/11 Welcome from 7 pm – Presentation of the principles and modalities of the Thematic School

20/11 Development beyond genetics: from conception to birth
Claire Rougeulle (Genetics and Epigenetics) and Wilfried Lignier (Sociology of Childhood and Socialization)

21/11 Diet and metabolism: eating practices, energy homeostasis and corpulence
Carina Prip-Buus (Physiology) and Marie Plessz (Sociology of Food)

22/11 Immunity and inflammation: biological basis of immune and inflammatory systems, infectious diseases, social variations
Sophie Laffont-Pradines (Immunology) and Michelle Kelly-Irving (Social Epidemiology)

23/11 Biological sex/gender in biological and sociological approaches to cardio/neurovascular cardio/neurovascular pathologies
Alain Lacampagne (Physiology) and Muriel Darmon (Sociology of Social Inequalities in Health), with contributions from Renée Ventura (Physiology), Charlotte Cordonnier (Neurology) and Aurore Loretti (Sociology)

24/11 Review – Group workshop


Congratulations to everyone involved in making this school a true success!

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