Rockefeller Archive Center

Rockefeller Archive Center Research Reports are created by recipients of research travel stipends and by many others who have conducted research at the RAC. The reports demonstrate the breadth of the RAC's archival holdings, particularly in the study of philanthropy and its effects. Read more about the history of philanthropy at Also, see the RAC Bibliography of Scholarship, a comprehensive online database of publications citing RAC archival collections.
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The Limitations of International Health Campaigns: Mexico's Experience with the Rockefeller Foundation, 1940-1950

January 1, 2009

The rapid development of Mexico's national health administration throughout the 1920s and 1930s owed much of its success to the Rockefeller Foundation's public health initiatives. Resulting advancements included disease eradication, sanitation campaigns, and health education programs. However, by the 1940s, these projects remained understaffed, underfunded, and therefore underdeveloped. Correspondence by Rockefeller officers reveals their perpetual frustration with inadequate library and laboratory resources, lack of personnel supervision, insufficient space, inconsistency in medical education, scarcity of well-trained health officials, ineffective health networks and administration, and difficulties with acceptance in the local communities. My research explores the domestic and international obstacles to establishing a well-developed public health initiative in Mexico during the 1940s and 1950s and will offer new insight into the limitations of international health campaigns by the Rockefeller Foundation.

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