The World Health Organization

Its Influence on Worldwide Research Policies
  • H. C. Goodman
  • T. A. Lambo


The World Health Organization (WHO) is the specialized agency of the United Nations dealing with health. WHO implements the policies established by its member countries at the annual World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland. WHO’s research program originated therefore because its member countries resolved that their health organization should promote research to solve those problems “which are better resolved by world cooperative endeavour than by local groups” and also to solve “major problems when local effort is inadequate. . . .”1 Interestingly—and perhaps unexpectedly— WHO’s research program, from its modest beginning in 1958, now has a pronounced feedback effect on the biomedical research policies of its member nations. A detailed account of the genesis of WHO’s research program has been published by Corning.2 This chapter will describe the development of WHO’s research program by illustrating the impact on national research policies of WHO’s recent emphasis on regional research development and especially on the concept of “special programs,” using as an example the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases.


Special Programme Research Policy Member Country Tropical Disease International Health 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. C. Goodman
    • 1
  • T. A. Lambo
    • 2
  1. 1.Tropical Medicine CenterJohns Hopkins UniversityBaltimoreUSA
  2. 2.World Health OrganizationGenevaSwitzerland

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