ITM and colonialism

Colonialism still leaves its traces in our contemporary society, in subtle and less subtle ways, in the way we deal with our past or how we think about our fellow human beings. ITM has its roots in colonialism but managed to evolve from a school of tropical diseases to a scientific research institute with strong partnerships in Asia, Latin America and Africa.
Allard L'Olivier (7) resized-1

Our viewpoint today

Our mission, values and objective have changed dramatically over the past century. Today, ITM strives for equality, diversity and solidarity. We carry out our research together with partner institutions from all over the world, with equal partnership and long-lasting, positive collaboration as top priorities. Every year, we welcome students from nearly 200 countries, and we are committed to a world in which everyone, regardless of origin, has access to comprehensive health care. 

The institute is aware of the structural discrimination still present everywhere. ITM does not escape it either. Therefore, we must also dare to take a critical look at our own operations. We established a Commission on Decolonisation to examine our past, present and future. But more is needed. Addressing decolonisation is high on ITM’s agenda, and given the importance of the topic, we want to be advised by experts in this field. We are in contact with an external party to further guide ITM in the decolonisation process in terms of research, education, international cooperation, human resources, artefacts and archives. In doing so, we will use all the input that has already come out of the internal Commission on Decolonisation.

We see this as a logical and necessary step to properly face our past, actively working to dismantle colonial structures that may be shining through in our operations. We owe this to our partners, students, patients and employees. As ITM, we want to set an example and lead the way for a more inclusive world.