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Professor Alan Bernstein appointed as new University of Oxford Director of Global Health

Professor Alan Bernstein has been appointed as the new head of Oxford Global Health, which will bring together and showcase the breadth of global health research across the University of Oxford.

Alan Bernstein, Professor Emeritus of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto and former inaugural president of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, has joined the University of Oxford as its new Director of Global Health to lead Oxford Global Health spanning all four academic divisions of the University to transform research capacity and impact in global health across the University, catalyse collaborative activities across disciplinary boundaries and drive support for global health at the University.

The University of Oxford is a world leading global health research university and a thought-leader in the field. Our research spans an extensive portfolio including but not limited to research on anti-microbial resistance, child health, mental disorders of the brain including mental health and epilepsy, pandemic sciences and decolonisation in global health.

Supported by the University’s Strategic Research Fund, the new Director of Global Health works across academic divisions to bring people and activities together to harness our collective strengths in global health research at Oxford, as well as supporting interdisciplinary research projects.

Professor Bernstein brings extensive convening experience from his roles as President of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Executive Director of the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise, and President and CEO of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, in addition to contributions to boards and committees including the Gates Foundation Scientific Advisory Committee on Global Health. His laboratory has made significant contributions to cancer research, stem cells and retrovirology and his laboratory alumni have gone on to successful careers in academia and the private sector.

Professor Irene Tracey, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, said: 'We are delighted to welcome Professor Bernstein to Oxford to take up this exciting new role. His outstanding contributions to health research globally are a perfect match to a role that will oversee the broad variety of research projects that Oxford is involved with right around the world, tackling our greatest health challenges. This new position recognises the importance of our partnerships at home and abroad, reflecting the truly international nature of modern research.'

Professor Alan Bernstein, Director of Global Health of the University of Oxford, said: 'Oxford is an amazing place to work on global health because of the scope and longstanding research relationships and partnerships across the world, as highlighted by the RECOVERY trial and the development of the COVID-19 and malaria vaccines.

'The wealth of research across biomedical and physical sciences, the humanities and social sciences gives us both unparalleled breadth and depth of expertise. This excellence was evident throughout the COVID-19 pandemic when the University led the world in drug and vaccine development and the deep insights into vaccine hesitancy and mis- and dis-information. This research and much else that Oxford is known for is having a marked effect on improving lives both here in the UK and across the world. Oxford Global Health will build on this rich history of excellence in research and impact on policy to open the door to new ways of thinking about the challenges in global health going forward both within Oxford and across our international networks. I look forward to getting to know the many great researchers here at Oxford and working with them to create opportunities that will make this initiative a success.'

Oxford Global Health aims to improve health globally, with researchers from a diverse range of disciplines delivering innovative and meaningful solutions to many of the world's biggest global health challenges. Working with partners, the University of Oxford’s collective strength and collaborative approach to addressing new and global health challenges is making a difference and benefiting people around the world. Oxford Global Health draws together and signposts to the combined work from across the Divisions, highlighting interdisciplinary research that supports synergies, innovation and solutions to meet global health challenges in order to change the world for the better.

As a priority for the University’s global health research we support inclusive, ethical and engaged work that has a high impact on lives in low and middle-income countries, and which demonstrates how the University of Oxford addresses the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals through its research, innovation and impact.

Find out more about Oxford Global Health.
Join the Oxford Global Health network.