The German Alliance for Global Health Research (GLOHRA) was established in February of 2020, coinciding with the unfolding COVID-19 Pandemic. Despite these unordinary circumstances, we are pleased to report that GLOHRA is fully in motion, committed to our mission of propelling interdisciplinary and collaborative global health research. A few milestones:
- In March, our website globalhealth.de and the Global Health Research Directory went live
- In April, GLOHRA members elected their first interdisciplinary Steering Committee. The committee represents 13 research institutions from across Germany. Half of the members are female, five are under 40 years of age and three were born outside Europe, bringing in perspectives from Asia, Africa, and the Americas. On 20 April, GLOHRA was officially launched with a virtual kick-off meeting with more than 100 participants.
- In May, Prof. Dr. Eva Rehfuess from Munich, Dr. Meral Esen from Tübingen and Prof. Dr. Walter Bruchhausen from Bonn were appointed as GLOHRA’s first speaker trio. In the same month, GLOHRA members co-authored and published a statement in support of the World Health Organization.
- In June, GLOHRA launched a call for interdisciplinary research projects. By supporting projects that push the boundaries of traditional research, GLOHRA intends to accelerate the development and implementation of groundbreaking ideas, promote interdisciplinarity and cross-sectorality in global health research and create opportunities to develop new models of cooperation and link disciplines and communities.
- In the second half of 2020, GLOHRA membership grew substantially to currently more than 550 members and associate members from across Germany, representing more than 100 research institutions and a wide variety of disciplines - from genetics and nephrology to ethics, architecture, mathematics, history and beyond.
- In October, the Steering Committee recommended the first three research projects for funding. In the same month, we launched our newsletter and hosted our first (virtual) Annual Symposium at the World Health Summit 2020 involving cross-sector discussions on multi-stakeholder collaboration and evidence-based decision making.
Although 2020 was not the start to the decade that most of us expected, it reinforced the conviction that we need a German Alliance for Global Health Research. It is increasingly clear that health cannot be studied in isolation and collaborative research is essential – during pandemics and beyond.
Thank you for your interest in GLOHRA, we wish you a healthy and productive end to 2020 and hope there will be more opportunities for personal interaction in 2021!