Building Leadership for Health
   Building Leadership for Health        

Global Health Diplomacy

I first became involved in global health issues when my friend John Wyn Owen of the Nuffield Trust asked me to lead the first UK programme on this topic in 1998, called Global Health: a local issue. We produced 17 papers on the subject and ran a national symposium. This led to the UK DH initiative - Health is Global, the first international conference on Global Health and Foreign Policy at Ditchley Park in 2004, a programme at the European Gastein Conference and eventually the establishment of Global Health Europe in Geneva. See the web site at .


This is a group of experts led by Professor Ilona Kickbusch, informally sharing ideas on global health at WHO HQ in Geneva. The Global Health Programme has developed many books, papers and training courses on aspects of global health policy and diplomacy. We developed a training programme for WHO Heads of Country Office in 2014 and I tutored this on-line course for 120 participants from whom I learnt a great deal.

I am  sad to record that my good friend John Wyn Owen has died. It was his vision and foresight  that brought UK and European attention to the issues raised by global health. He continued to champion efforts in Wales and Worldwide to engage health leaders at every level to address global health as a local issue. He also helped Medsin, as it was then called, to organise their first conference on global health in Cardiff, 2001. << New image with text >>

IFMSA and other students prepare for their advocacy at the World Health Assembly.  The training materials presented here were intended to provide a basic  understanding of Global Health Diplomacy and Advocacy, and exercises panels of experts and their own group work helped them to prepare to make their case at the WHA. 

Global Health Diplomacy and Advocacy for Youth Pre WHA Course 2019
This is a discovery learning programme providing a framework of ideas and links to resources that can be used by learners to develop their understanding of diplomacy and advocacy for health for IFMSA and other students attending the WHA. Please choose the areas you wish to explore and those you will skim over. The questions and exercises set out in following sections can also be used. The 2019 event was a great success see the report at
Adobe Acrobat document [2.7 MB]
Global Health Diplomacy and Advocacy Exercises for IFMSA
This provides a series of learning experiences for IFMSA students.
Seminar questions and exercises4 2018.pd[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [1.0 MB]
Developing Advocacy for Students for Global Health
Some discovery learning materials to help SfGH think about their approach to advocacy.
SfGH Advocacy.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [932.8 KB]
Getting the Planetary Health Messages Across
This is an exercise in advocacy for Planetary Health based on examples of a UK programme for Sexual Health and HIV awareness and the recent Extinction Rebellion protests.
Getting Your Message Across.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [194.0 KB]
Test Your Understanding
This is a list of questions to test your understanding of global health diplomacy
Test Your Understanding4.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [194.6 KB]
Lessons in International Negotiation from Brexit
This note uses a brief extract from the IFMSA course to consider the lessons that can be taken from recent Brexit negotiations for other international exchanges. It shows how key aspects of the negotiation were mishandled by the UK Governments of May and Johnson.
Lessons fom Brexit Negotiations.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [788.4 KB]
Notes on IFMSA Advocacy Targets 2018
This sets out some ideas on the target areas for IFMSA advocacy at WHA 71
Notes on IFMSA Advocacy Issues for WHA 2[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [326.9 KB]
An Introduction to Global Health Diplomacy
A booklet that gives an overview of global health diplomacy as a basis for a course I provide to Cambridge MPhil students in Global Health.
Global Health Diplomacym.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [4.2 MB]
Global Health Diplomacy and Advocacy
This is the presentation for a course I gave for the International Federation of Medical Students Association at their pre WHA meeting at the Graduate Institute Geneva (I gave a shorter version to Medsin members in York)
Adobe Acrobat document [3.8 MB]
UK Partnership for Global Health Diplomacy
A brief introduction to my idea that UK could lead the evolution of network diplomacy for global health as a step towards modern diplomacy and global governance for the Sustainable Development Goals.
UK Partnership for Global Health Diploma[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [2.7 MB]
An Introduction to the Canada UK Colloquium Report on Global Health
I gave this to the All Party Parliamentary Groups on Global Health and Canada - UK relations
Joint APPG.pptx
Microsoft Power Point presentation [7.1 MB]
Report of the 2013 Canada UK Colloquium on Global Health
Report of a meeting of 50 experts in health and diplomacy from the UK and Canada for which I was rapporteur.
Adobe Acrobat document [1.1 MB]
Cross Government Support for Global Health Diplomacy in the Republic of Moldova
This report draws lessons from an exercise to build on and improve procedures for cross government and whole society engagement in global health diplomacy. It provides tools that other countries can use to develop their own processes.
Adobe Acrobat document [447.1 KB]
Values for Global Health Governance
This is a paper I gave at Harvard on the different values applied to global health governance by different countries.
Adobe Acrobat document [221.2 KB]

Other Resources


See the next page (under the picture top left) for more training resources on globalisation and health and local negotiations for health. Further resources on aspects of globalization and health can be found at where I worked on a series of policy papers and an extended glossary with my young friend David Gleicher. Also see the paper I published with my colleague professor Ilona Kickbush "The European Policy Glossary on Global Health" You should also look at the Training Toolkits for SfGH.


Recent Publications
Text book "Global Health Diplomacy", available here.

Paper in SMQ on Value for Money in Behaviour Change available here.


Gateway Portsmouth

Led by Portsmouth City Council and funded by the European Integration Fund has  issued a series of reports setting out lessons for co production and social integration. Read more here. We ran a dissemination day for  representatives of integration projects from 6 EU Countries.


Global Health Diplomacy

I  worked with  colleagues to develop training material for an open access online course, which provides an introduction to the topic suitable for diplomats in training, health advocates or international officials, academics and others including students of global health. See   


We ran a course for IFMSA on global health advocacy in 2019 before the WHA see here.


In 2020 I developed further courses on global health advocacy and diplomacy for Students for Global Health, the Cambridge MPhil in Public Health and IFMSA see here.


Evaluating Health Wellbeing and Behaviour Change SROI

I updated the tools and notes to reflect the  evidence in 2016. I provide a discovery learning course on health and wellbeing evaluation for LA and CCG commissioning teams and health professionals see here




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© Graham Lister