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Laurent Pordié

Anthropologist and Pharmacologist, Senior Researcher, CNRS

Contact: laurent.pordie(at)




Laurent’s first engagement with research began in Cambodia by a doctorate in pharmaceutical sciences, followed by studies in ethnopharmacology. He then undertook a curriculum in anthropology to broaden the scope of his work and completed a PhD dissertation on the social dynamics of medicine in the Himalayas.

Laurent then became particularly interested in the dynamics of global asymmetries as transformative agents in healthcare, in the case of transnational health, on the one hand, in the shifting sites of pharmaceutical and therapeutic innovation, on the other hand. While in India, his work examined in this line the wellness industry, the globalization of Asian medicines and the advent of science and technology in the industrial production of herbal medicines.

His current research is located in Cambodia and focuses on pharmaceutical objects. Laurent studies the changes in values, meanings, agency and therapeutic power induced by the global circulation of pharmaceuticals. A second research axis explores drugs distribution networks, pharmaceutical regulation, clinical prescriptions and heterodox practices of diagnosis and drug combination.

Laurent is the "Health, Medicine and Science in Asia" series editor with Amsterdam University Press. He is also Associate Editor for the journals East Asian Science Technology and Society and Asian Medicine.

Books and special issues

2022 pordie duke COUV MUP PORDIE circul and governance Beaudevin Pordie Medical Anthropology

 Pordie-Gaudilliere cover Pordie CoverAM  Pordie EHESS 2013

Pordie EJOTS 2013 Pordie Routledge 2008 Pordie RAC 2011 Pordie IndianAnthropologist 2007 

Pordie Karthala 2005 Pordie IFP 2003


° Plastic reduction : non-ecological transition and infra-politics (IFRIS). Coordination (with F. Dedieu et C. Pessis)

° Circulation of Pharmaceuticals in South-East Asia: Trajectories, Objects, Multiplicities (IRASEC). Coordination.

° From International to Global: Knowledge, Diseases, and the Postwar Government of Health (ERC GLOBHEALTH). Coordination of the axe "Traditional herbal therapeutic preparations: globalizing alternative industrial products".

° Social Studies of Herbal Pharmaceutical Industry in Asia (PharmAsia Network). Coordination.

Selected publications

Pordié, L.; Kloos, S., eds. (2022). Healing at the Periphery, Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Pordié, L., Hancart Petitet, P. (2022). The amchi at the margins. Notes on childbirth practices in Ladakh, in L. Pordié and S. Kloos (eds.), Healing at the Periphery, Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Meier zu Biesen, C. ; Pordié, L. ; Pourraz, J. ; Gaudillière, J.-P. (2022). Markets, medicines, and health globalization, in J.-P. Gaudillière, A. McDowell, C. Lang and C. Beaudevin (eds.), Global Health for All. Knowledge, Politics and Practices, New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press.

McDowell, A.; Ruault, L.; Fiorelli, O.; Pordié, L. (2022). Localization in the global, in J.-P. Gaudillière, A. McDowell, C. Lang and C. Beaudevin (eds.), Global Health for All. Knowledge, Politics and Practices, New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press.

Kloos, S.; Pordié, L. (2022). The Indian face of Sowa Rigpa, in L. Pordié and S. Kloos(eds.), Healing at the Periphery, Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Pordié, L. (2021). Unstable Pharmaceutical Values. The Grey Political Economy of Drug Circulation in Cambodia, BioSocieties, 16: 342-362.

Pordié, L. (2020). Aid, Diplomacy, Autocracy. Entering the Covid-19 crisis in Cambodia, Somatosphere, May.

Gaudillière, J.-P.; Beaudevin, C.; Gradmann, C.; Lovell, A.; Pordié, L., eds. (2020). Global Health and the New World Order. Historical and Anthropological Approaches to a Changing Regime of Governance, Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Pordié, L. (2020). Covid-19 et instrumentalisation politique au Cambodge, Carnet de l'EHESS, May.

Pordié, L. (2020). Governance, circulation, and pharmaceutical objects, in C. Coderey and L. Pordié (eds.). Circulation and Governance of Asian Medicine, London and New York: Routledge.

Quet, M.; Pordié, L.; Bochaton, A.; Chantavanich, S.; Kiatying-Angsulee, N.; Lamy, M.; Vungsiriphisal, P. (2018). Regulation Multiple. Pharmaceutical Trajectories and Modes of Control in the ASEAN, Science, Technology and Society 23(3): 1-19.

Pordié, L. (2016). How a Lifestyle Product became a Pharmaceutical Specialty, in L. Manderson, E. Cartwright and A. Hardon (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Medical Anthropology, London and New York: Routledge.

Pordié, L. (2016). The Vagaries of Therapeutic Globalization. Fame, Money and Social Relations in Tibetan Medicine, International Journal of Social Science Studies 4(2): 38-52.

Beaudevin, C.; Pordié, L. (2016). Diversion and Globalization in Biomedical Technologies, Medical Anthropology 35(1): 1-4.

Pordié, L. (2015). Hangover free! The social and material trajectories of PartySmart, Anthropology & Medicine 22(1): 34-48.

Pordié, L. (2014). Pervious drugs. Making the pharmaceutical object in techno-ayurveda, Asian Medicine  9(1-2): 49-76.

Pordié, L. ; Hardon, A. (2015). Drugs' stories and itineraries. On the making of Asian industrial medicines, Anthropology & Medicine 22(1): 1-6.

Pordié, L; Gaudillière, J.-P. (2014). Industrial Ayurveda. Drug discovery, reformulation and the market, Asian Medicine 9(1-2): 1-11.

Pordié, L. (2015). An anthropological equivoque. Researchers' engagement and knowledge production (Comment on "Coproducing efficacious medicines"), Current Anthropology 56(2): 198-199.

Pordié, L. (2015). Regional conflicts, collective identities and the neutrality of the clinical encounter: A note on tibetan Medicine in Ladakh, In C. Ramble & U. Roesler (eds.). Tibetan and Himalayan Healing. An Anthology for Anthony Aris, Katmandu: Vajra Publications.

Pordié, L. (2015). Genealogy and ambivalence of a therapeutic heterodoxy. Islam and Tibetan medicine in North-western India, Modern Asian Studies 49(6): 1772-1807.

Pordié, L.; Blaikie, C. (2014). Knowledge and skills in motion. Layers of Tibetan medical education in India, Culture, Medicine & Psychiatry 38(3): 340-368.

Pordié, L.; Gaudillière, J.-P. (2014). The reformulation regime in drug discovery. Revisiting polyherbals and property rights in the ayurvedic industry, East Asian Science, Technology and Society 8(1): 57-79.

Pordié, L. (2013). Spaces of connectivity, shifting temporality. Enquiries in transnational health, European Journal of Transnational Studies 5(1): 6-26.

Pordié, L.; Simon, E. (2013). Les nouveaux guérisseurs. Biographies de thérapeutes au temps de la globalisation, Paris: Editions de l'EHESS.

Pordié, L. (2012). Sortir de l’impasse épistémologique. Nouveaux médicaments et savoirs traditionnels, Sciences Sociales et Santé 30(2): 93-103.

Pordié, L. (2012). Branding Indian Aromatherapy. Differentiation through transnational networks, in Volker Scheid and Hugh MacPherson (eds.), Integrating East Asian Medicine into Contemporary Heathcare, London: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier.

Pordié, L. (2011). Se démarquer dans l’industrie du bien-être. Transnationalisme, innovation et indianité, Anthropologie & Santé 3 [En ligne].

Pordié, L. (2011). Accentuations et pragmatismes. Le savoir médical tibétain à destination des étrangers, Revue d’Anthropologie des Connaissances 5(1): 99-130.

Pordié, L. (2010). The politics of therapeutic evaluation in Asian medicine, Economic & Political Weekly XLV(18): 57-64.

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