, Volume 12, Issue 2, pp 147-148
Date: 06 Mar 2004

European Public Health Association: One year of German presidency

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Abstract

The European Public Health Association (EUPHA) has existed for 12 years. The reasons why this scientific society has grown considerably over the years are its yearly conferences and the publication of the European Journal of Public Health (EJPH). The journal is renowned and has an impact factor of 1.15. Most journals from the field of social medicine in its broadest sense have lower values. The interest in the annual meetings of EUPHA rose steadily. For the Rome congress, which took place November 20–22, 2003 with more than 900 scientists attending 638 abstracts were submitted of which 415 were accepted for oral or poster presentation (rejection rate, approximately 30%), indicating that scientific quality is EUPHA’s main purpose. This is apparently in contrast to many so-called European or World Congresses at which often nearly every abstract is accepted in order to have the largest number of participants possible. Over the years it has paid off that EUPHA always has emphasized scientific quality. Thus EUPHA has a remarkable scientific database and a comprehensive network of experts working in the field of public health in research, practice and policy. This makes the cooperation with EUPHA attractive. The society has close relationships with the European Commission, specifically EU SANCO in Luxembourg (European Health Ministry), WHO/Euro in Copenhagen, the OECD in Paris and ASPHER—the European Society for Public Health teaching. In 2003, a book entitled Public Health in Europe—10 years EUPHA was published by EUPHA in cooperation with the European Commission and WHO/Euro (Springer, Heidelberg).

In conclusion, from my point of view, the favourable development of a scientific society—as it is the case with EUPHA—is determined by three relevant factors:

  1. A comprehensively organized annual congress for scientific and social exchange.

  2. A renowned and well-accepted scientific journal. Yearly meetings and the journal are providing an important identification forum for members.

  3. A scientific database as well as a network of experts enabling interested professionals to find answers to actual scientific questions.