COHRED and Global Forum for Health Research agree to organizational integration

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National research and innovation for health will be strengthened by global platform, and global advocacy will get an anchor in national research systems

Geneva, November 19, 2010. The Global Forum for Health Research and COHRED – the Council on Health Research for Development – reached an agreement this week for the integration of the two organisations – which will benefits countries and the global health research community.

The Forum’s governing body, the Foundation Council, decided that the future of Global Forum for Health Research will be best served by integrating its programmes and activities with those of COHRED. The integration of the two organisations will be managed by a transition team consisting of members of the governing bodies and senior staff of both organisations.

The board-level discussion saw clear complementarities between the expertise of two organizations, where their integration will mean better synergy and added value for research for health. The integration builds on COHRED’s portfolio of services and tools that support countries to strengthen governance and management of research and innovation for health, including its Health Research Web platform; and on the Global Forum’s influential international conference on research and innovation for health for development, its tracking of resource flows in health research, and its advocacy skills.

From its side, the COHRED Board welcomes this new step in COHRED’s evolution. “We are enthusiastic that this opportunity, which has been discussed for several years, is now happening. We feel that the COHRED Board and the Forum’s Foundation Council should dissolve to give space for a new organisation to reinvent itself”, says Cheikh Mbacké, COHRED Board Chair.

Gill Samuels, Chair of the Foundation Council of the Global Forum commented, “We believe that the synergy between the two bodies is clear, and we welcome the opportunity to participate in the creation of new a organization addressing both global and national needs, opportunities and priorities in the areas of research and innovation for health”.

The transition team will develop an agreement on timeline and actions for the complete integration of the Global Forum and COHRED, to be approved by March 2011 at the latest.

Bringing these two organisations together will benefit all those who have an interest in research for health, equity and development, says Carel IJsselmuiden, COHRED’s Director. “The joining of the Forum with COHRED is a truly exciting development that prepares us to engage health and development in a new way – in line with a new phase of south-north interaction. It is about providing better services and value for money to countries and to those investing in global research and innovation for health. We also see an opportunity to combine the expertise of both teams to link the civil society sector more strongly with the global and country health research agendas.”
CONTACT: Michael Devlin, Head Knowledge Sharing, Advocacy and Communication, COHRED

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