A new roadmap on global child health

Human rights are still merely an abstract concept for millions of women, children, and adolescents – and for our youngest progress is often defined as simply a question of survival. Now the Swedish Institute for Global Health Transformation (SIGHT) and The Swedish Society of Medicine are launching a road map for global child health, emphasizing progress as the next generation’s right to thrive – placing children firmly at the centre of UN’s 2030 Agenda for the Sustainable development.

According to the road map Placing children at the centre of the sustainable development goals, survival is a poor benchmark for ensuring the wellbeing of the next generation. These children and adolescents need to be able to thrive, empowered with sufficient resilience facing global challenges such as climate change, conflict-forced migration, and an evolving burden of non-communicable disease. 

The road map is calling for a transformative agenda of child-centred development. According to the authors a lasting progress on child and adolescent health demands harnessing the synergies of the SDGs.

The road map identifies and focuses on five main leverage points:

1. Redefining global child health in the post-2015 era: placing children at the centre of the SDGs through a life-course perspective

A compelling new narrative recognising children and adolescents as both initiator and beneficiaries of development by placing them at the centre of the SDGs will increase the relevance of the SDG framework.

2. Striving for equity: ensuring no child is left behind 

Investment in interventions proven to reduce morbidity and mortality must be supported by continuous scientific and contextual evaluation of their impact, including age and sex-aggregated data, to ensure no child or adolescent is left behind.

3. Enabling a child’s right to thrive throughout life 

Transforming the perception of the child, from a medical to a holistic and relational perspective, acknowledges the unique rights children have from birth. 

4. Bridging the “know-do gap”: facilitating informed policy-making and implementation

Expanding translational research programmes and implementation research that engage and build capacity within local communities play a vital role in combating emerging global health challenges. 

5. Capitalising on interlinkages within the SDGs to galvanise multisectoral action

Identifying and capitalising on interconnections within and between the SDGs and their convergence on the health and wellbeing of children and adolescents is fundamental for promoting effective multi-sectoral partnerships that strengthen the sustainability and resilience of health and social systems. Understanding the nature of these interlinkages will be instrumental.

Placing children and adolescents at the centre of the SDGs will ensure their right to survive and thrive throughout the life-course, as the true beneficiaries of the 2030 Agenda.

Note for Editors:

The road map is available here

The writing group: Tobias Alfvén, Johan Dahlstrand, David Humphreys, Daniel Helldén, Sofia Hammarstrand, Anna-Clara Hollander, Mats Målqvist, Sahar Nejat and Peter Søgaard Jørgensen


Tobias Alfvén,
Swedish Society of Medicine,
+46 (0)70-757 80 93

Peter Friberg,
Director SIGHT,
+46 (0)70-676 00 13

Press Contact: 

Johan Dahlstrand,
+46 (0)70-960 24 39

Second meeting with WGH Sweden: “There is still a shortage of women in leadership positions”

Advancing Women in Science, Medicine and Global Health / The Lancet.

Women in Global Health Sweden organized a 2nd meeting on June 17th, at the Karolinska Institutet. The attending 25 participants were there to discuss the much-needed direction of WGH Sweden that would be useful for equal gender representation in leadership and work environment in the field of global health in Sweden.

Helena Nordenstedt, one of the co-founders, talked about the misconceptions and facts that we oftentimes omit, and scarcity of data related to sex and gender.

Sara Causevic presented “Advancing women in science, medicine and global health” from The Lancet, (Feb 09, 2019, Volume 393, and Number 10171), as food for thought before the group discussions, highlighting few thoughts:

  • There is a shortage of women in leadership positions as well as in decision making roles;
  • Research that is sex and gender disaggregated, with relevant issues related to LMIC/LIC, research collaboration;
  • Ensuring finance for this type of data as well as gender equality including in research and development.

With the further discussion in the World Café, led by Emelie Looft-Trägårdh, the suggestions from the participants were as following:

1.    What do we experience as the biggest challenges for women working with global health in Sweden?

The most significant challenges are the opportunities to network, or to have a more extensive network comprising of other disciplines not focusing only on science and researchers. Another challenge identified is the limitation of opportunities in the field of global health, especially as a woman and coming from a different ethnic origin. Funding is still scarce and available mainly to men. Or, in most cases, men are research project leaders.

2.    What should the platform WGH Sweden target?

The Swedish platform should think of how to create an enabling environment to promote transformative leadership in all levels of experience, background, and knowledge. It should go beyond the scientific forum, but capture the NGO sector, private sector, and individuals. Interdisciplinarity matters. Hierarchies that are present in other communities are not typical in Sweden; however, they still exist. Ensure empathy and creation of an enabling and supportive environment. It could be a space for sharing and pushing the global health agenda, not least from a gender perspective.

3.    What solutions, actions, and strategies would be relevant to tackle these challenges?

There is a need to understand the baseline statistics of women in global health in Sweden: who are we, what are our profiles, and how can we connect better. At the same time, WGH Sweden should be a passing place, where networking makes women more visible to be considered as moderators, panelists, and for job-positions. These meetings should have both vertical and horizontal approach.

As a wrap up from Wiebke Mohr, it was concluded that women should, in general, be more supportive of their peers. Men should be part of the narrative and solution. But as Karolina Nyberger said in her final remarks, quoting Eleanor Roosevelt: “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent” – she added that being supported and asking for a support does not mean that you are inferior. We should be there to support each other.

Seeking long and healthy lives for generations to come

Sight student
Photo: Truls Busch-Christensen

A youth-led conversation was held at The Swedish Society of Medicine, in which Director General of WHO, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Seth Berkley from Gavi the Vaccine Alliance and Peter Sands from Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria participated in a panel discussion together with students from different disciplines.

Challenging questions were asked by the students. The global health leaders had for instance to answer: What interventions are needed to change the fact that only 20 percent of global health leader positions are held by women? 

According to the Dr Tedros it is still a mindset issue. “The patronising mentality must stop which tend not see women around us who have the needed competence”, he said.

A Master student of Economics wanted to know what a young student who is passionate about global health should invest in. “We need brilliant talents”, said Peter Sands, and continued: “Probably those who have no idea that they actually are passionate about global health, but have skills of supply chains and functional skills. Above all, we do need a much broader scale of talents and skills.”

Youth-led conversation
Photo: Truls Busch-Christensen

Next steps for Women in Global Health Sweden

Women in Global Health SwedenSome glad news is that the global network of Women in Global Health is growing, with more chapters in  Somalia and a regional African hub launched in Kigali, Rwanda.

Women in Global Health Sweden network had a busy several months, using it is an opportunity to discuss the next steps and initiatives of the WGH Sweden. An article was written for the Women’s health day, that focused on women health, and there were several events, such as the WHO Partner’s Forum, where WGH was present.

At the same time, inspired by the fruitful launch event in January, as well as feedback received from the participants, WGH Sweden is preparing for an informal “world café” meeting to be held in June. The meeting will be a platform for discussion on the next steps of WGH Sweden, taking into a consideration all the global movements and initiatives, such as the launch of the Lancet issue “Advancing women in science, medicine and global health” (Feb 09, 2019, Volume 393, and Number 10171), the Global 50/50 report, and Delivered by women, led by men: A gender and equity analysis of the global health and social workforce.

The June meeting will gather different participants to discuss the issues of women in global health in Sweden, the challenges we face, and how to overcome them with successful strategies, actions and activities. Also, this will be a chance to discuss mentorship, presence and advocacy.

More information on the event will follow in several days.

Sara Causevic
PhD Student, WGH Sweden
Research group on Global and Sexual Health (GloSH)
Dept of Public Health Sciences | Karolinska Institutet
Twitter: @saracausev

One Health: Antibiotic resistance, zoonotic diseases and food security in focus for SIGHT Award 2018

9 November 2018

Johanna Lindahl, senior scientist in veterinary-epidemiology, is awarded the SIGHT Award 2018 and SEK 100 000 from the Swedish Institute for Global Health Transformation, SIGHT. The prize is awarded for excellent scientific contribution to global health.

LindahlJohanns_sight2018_350Johanna Lindahl is an associate professor and active at the International Livestock Research Institute, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and Uppsala university. Commenting on the award, Lindahl says that it is both honouring and encouraging.

– This goes for both the area of One Health and for me personally, given the scale of the challenge and that relatively few people work with the issue. Maybe this award can raise more awareness, highlighting the need for deeper knowledge in zoonotic diseases and the significance of human-animal interaction for antibiotic resistance while showing how important this interplay is to global health.

Citation for her award:

”Johanna Lindahl has from a holistic perspective and in cooperation with researchers from low and middle-income countries developed our knowledge within areas of crucial relevance for the well-being and survival of mankind globally, namely human and animal interaction (”One Health”) as well as antibiotic resistance.”

 Award ceremony 25th November

The Prize was instituted with the support from the Einhorn family foundation and is awarded during the Voices 4 Health concert, with first performance at the Eric Ericson Hall in Stockholm, on the 25th November. The decision on awardee for the SIGHT Award 2018 was taken by the board of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

Read more about the Voices 4 Health concert

For more information and interviews

Awardee Johanna Lindahl: J.Lindahl@cgiar.org

SIGHT’s Director Peter Friberg: peter.friberg@kva.se, +46 (0)70-676 00 13



Antibiotikaresistens och interaktionen människa och djur i fokus för SIGHT Award 2018

9 November 2018

Det är Johanna Lindahl, forskare inom veterinär-epidemiologi, som får priset och 100 000 kronor från Swedish Institute for Global Health Transformation, SIGHT. Priset delas ut för en utmärkt vetenskaplig insats inom global hälsa.

LindahlJohanns_sight2018_350Johanna Lindahl är docent och verksam vid International Livestock Research Institute, Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet samt Uppsala universitet.

Motiveringen till hennes utmärkelse:

”Johanna Lindahl har utifrån ett helhetsperspektiv och i samarbete med forskare från låg- och medelinkomstländer utvecklat vår kunskap inom områden med stor relevans för mänsklighetens välmående och fortlevnad globalt, nämligen interaktionen mellan människa och djur (”one health”) samt antibiotikaresistens.”

I en kommentar säger Johanna Lindahl att utmärkelsen är såväl hedrande som uppmuntrande.

– Det gäller både området one health och för mig personligen med tanke på att arbetet är så stort och vi är så pass få som arbetar med frågan. Kanske det här priset kan lyfta behovet av kunskap om interaktionen mellan människa, djur och ekosystem för antibiotikaresistens och samspelets betydelse för global hälsa.

Prisutdelning 25 november

Priset har instiftats med stöd från Familjen Einhorns Stiftelse och delas ut av Stefan Einhorn i samband med konsert med uruppförande i Eric Ericsonhallen i Stockholm, den 25 november. Beslut om mottagare av SIGHT Award 2018 har fattats av Kungl. Vetenskapsakademiens akademistyrelse.

Läs mer om konserten

För mer information och intervjuer

Pristagaren Johanna Lindahl: J.Lindahl@cgiar.org

SIGHTs föreståndare Peter Friberg: peter.friberg@kva.se, 070-676 00 13


Fakta: Swedish Institute for Global Health Transformation, SIGHT, arbetar för att stärka forskning och kunskapsspridning i global hälsa. SIGHT startades vid Kungl. Vetenskapsakademien år 2017 med finansiering från Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The Nobel Peace Prize 2018 – putting an end to sexual violence in armed conflict

5 October 2018

Niklas Elmehed © Nobel Media AB 2018

SIGHT congratulates the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize laureates, Nadia Murad, a survivor of sexual violence in armed conflict and a human rights defender and Denis Mukwege, a gynecologist devoting his life to restore and empower the victims of sexual violence in armed conflict. The laureates manifest the importance of seeing health, peace and gender equality as being complementary and intrinsically interdependent.