A special issue of African Journal of AIDS Research (AJAR) on the structural drivers of HIV has just been published. Based on a series of papers drawn from the 3rd Structural Drivers of HIV Conference, co-hosted by Health Economics and HIV and AIDS Research Division (HEARD) in Cape Town last year (2013), papers in this edition address the importance of understanding the broader social, cultural, economic and environmental factors affecting HIV transmission, and the contextual complexities of adapting and implementing HIV and AIDS interventions to different settings.
Hosted by HEARD in collaboration with HIV and Development Group at the University of East Anglia, and the STRIVE Programme at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, the 3rd Structural Drivers of HIV Conference explored the contextual complexities that researchers and programmers across the HIV and AIDS field wrestle with when planning and implementing HIV programmes. Under the theme, Contextualising structural factors in HIV prevention, the selected papers in this special issue highlight the need to recognise that human behaviour is not determined by a single causal factor, and sustained change in human behaviour is extremely difficult to achieve through generic ‘one size fits all’ interventions. Interventions are likely to fail if they do not take into account the context in which an intervention is introduced; a context which may change as the intervention is implemented and be shaped by the factors which may act asbarriers or facilitators for different people at different times.