Paillette’s general research methodology is that employed by historians, with particular emphasis on the construction and analysis of an archival collection of primary sources. For her plague in Oporto study, she retrieved sources such as the archives of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the Pasteur Institute, alongside additional printed sources (published reports, journal and newspaper articles, etc.). Her analysis also takes into consideration the work of recent historians.
The specific approach is that used in the history of international relations, in the renewed tradition of Pierre Renouvin. Such a historiography, aiming to be comprehensive in scope, includes the analysis of decision-making processes, taking into account not only the weight of political events but also of the “profound forces” (economic, social, etc.) and the different flows (knowledge, practices, etc.) that shape long-term relations between states, peoples, and societies.
In addition, special attention is paid to the stakeholders of a global health diplomacy and to the different scales of this diplomacy. Mapping the various actors involved in the epidemic crises is crucial.
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