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Forum 11

The Forum meeting of the Global Forum for Health Research has become a premier annual event to debate critical research gaps and to mobilize campaigns that address the health needs of the poor and marginalized.

Equitable Access: Research challenges for health in developing countries

Beijing, 29 October - 2 November 2007:

Forum 11 was organized at the invitation of the Ministry of Health of the People's Republic of China. It brought together participants from a broad range of constituencies: health and development ministries, multilateral and bilateral agencies, research-oriented bodies and universities, NGOs and civil society, the private sector and the media.

Forum 11 Overview video (flash player required)

Participants were pleased with Forum 11:

  • 97% were completely satisfied with the programme
  • 87% considered the programme to have dealt well with controversial topics
  • 96% of participants were satisfied or very satisfied with the Marketplace

Forum 11 in figures:

  • Some 620 participants from 77 countries attended 55 sessions over four days
  • 60% of participants from low- and middle-income countries, 40% from high-income
  • 102 speakers, facilitators, chairs, discussants and poster presenters funded by the Global Forum
  • 60 Marketplace stalls
  • 85 research posters
  • More female participants than in previous year

Forum 11 Sessions:

  • examined how research can help to identify and address barriers to access of all types (including economic, geographical, institutional, political, sociocultural, technological)
  • identified measures that would ensure equitable access for all, especially groups that have experienced long-standing historical discrimination: women, disabled peoples, indigenous peoples, poor people, people from low-income countries, elderly people, children, people of low social class or caste, among others.

Themes in the programme included equitable access to health systems, innovation in research for equitable access, research on determinants of health equity and the future of research for health. Video of Pramilla Senanayake (Flash player required)


  • the opening ceremony featured Dr Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization ( read her speech) ( video excerpt flash player required)), Professor Chen Zhu, Minister of Health of China, Professor Han Qide, Vice-Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of China and Dr Pramilla Senanayake, former Chair of the Foundation Council of the Global Forum for Health Research
  • focus on young researchers with a poster competition for the under-40s won by Alice Joan Ferrer from the University of the Philippines in the Visayas for her poster on "Targeting women in urban poor communities in the Philippines for maternal health care services"
  • the participation of the winners of the Global Forum/The Lancet " Young Voices in Research for Health 2007" essay competition for the under-30s: Seye Abimbola from Nigeria, Denise Nacif Pimenta from Brazil, Laura Sikstrom from Canada, Lee Yung Wong from Malaysia and Zhang Lingling from the People's Republic of China (see photo below)
  • launch of the (Tropical Diseases Research to foster Innovation and Knowledge Application) initiative, sponsored by the UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR), to foster access to innovation and enhance applications of knowledge derived from infectious diseases research
  • first public release of the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research Biennial Review "Sound choices: Enhancing capacity for evidence-informed health policy"
  • launch of the The Lancet series on civil registration and vital statistics, sponsored by the Health Metrics Network
  • launch of the "Intellectual Property Management in Health and Agricultural Innovation" handbook by Dr Anatole Krattiger (see photo below)

Photos © Global Forum for Health Research\Bernardo De Niz