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Abstract: Future global health jobs and competencies: Views from a survey of global health leaders

The following abstract was presented at the Implementation Science and Global Health satellite meeting on March 17, 2010 at Bethesda, Maryland.

Presenter

Stephen Gloyd, MD, MPH
Professor, Department of Global Health
University of Washington

Co-Authors

  • Sara Hohl, MPH, University of Washington
  • Julie Beschta, MPH, University of Washington
  • Amy Hagopian, PhD, MHS, University of Washington
  • Judy Wasserheit, MD, MPH, University of Washington

FIC Award

Objectives

We investigated how universities can improve global health curriculum to prepare students who will effectively address future global issues and trends.

Methods

We conducted a global health job snapshot via internet search. We also conducted 25 semi-structured interviews with global health leaders (CEOs, directors, senior management) representing 34 global health organizations. Respondents represented donor organizations (bi- or multi-lateral, private foundations), implementing organizations (non-governmental organizations, national agencies) and academic organizations (universities, research institutions).

Results

A majority of respondents stated that future global health professionals will need 1) a knowledge base that emphasizes social determinants of health, understanding health systems, and epidemiology of disease; 2) applied leadership skills, including coalition building, vision and policy analysis, and cultural competency; and 3) management skills, including in human resources, analysis and synthesis, and finance. Respondents also emphasized a need for applied, experiential, and “real world” learning approaches to curriculum.

Conclusion

To train a more successful generation of global health professionals, institutions must offer multi-disciplinary approaches and a curriculum that exposes them to a wide variety of knowledge and skills.  Curriculum must facilitate a learning environment that promotes practical, inter-disciplinary teamwork, coalition building, and cooperation.

Updated April 2010

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