Leopoldina’s annual meeting looks at ways to achieve global health and equity

Leopoldina’s annual meeting looks at ways to achieve global health and equity

Collaboration between many disciplines is required to improve the health situation and equity of all people worldwide. During its two-day annual meeting 2022, starting today in Halle (Saale)/Germany, the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina focuses on “Global Health: From Health Services to Climate Change and to Social Justice” and thus focuses on a broad spectrum of global health problems. In the morning, WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the German Federal Minister for Education and Research Bettina Stark-Watzinger and the Prime Minister of Saxony-Anhalt Dr. Reiner Haseloff all welcome words. The annual meeting lectures will all be streamed live.

“Global Health is an interdisciplinary field of work that aims to improve the health of everyone worldwide and promote health equity. Health impacts must be taken into account in all policy areas, an approach known as ‘Health in all policies'”, expert in veterinary medicine and microbiology says Prof. Lothar H. Wieler. The president of the Robert Koch Institute has been a member of the Leopoldina since 2010. As Acting Senator of the Global Health Section, he is a member of the organizing committee of the annual meeting, together with Leopoldina members Prof. Dr. Susanne Hartmann, biologist and infectious immunologist and molecular biologist and virologist Prof. Dr. Thomas C. Mettenleiter. In his inaugural address today at 12.15pm, Wieler discusses the lessons of the COVID-19 pandemic for global health.

Social scientist Prof. dr. dr. Johanna Hanefeld will speak on “International Health Protection and Health Equity” in today’s evening lecture at 8:15 PM. The head of the Center for International Health Protection at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin/Germany will discuss issues such as the importance of globally connected and more robust public health systems.


In the morning, the Leopoldina honors the materials scientist and biomedical engineer Prof. dr. Francesca Santoro with the “Leopoldina Early Career Award”. The prize, funded by the Commerzbank Foundation, is worth 30,000 euros. In her lecture, the prize winner will discuss her work in the field of bioelectronics, where she develops new materials that are able to interact with the skin and the brain.

Yesterday, Thursday 22 September, the Leopoldina Senate invited the geologist Prof.dr. Onno Oncken elected a member of the Academy’s presidency. He succeeds engineering expert Prof. Dr. Sigmar Wittig, who has been a member of the Academy’s presidium since 2012 as secretary of Class I ‒ Mathematics, Science and Technology. The Senate also elected Vice-President Prof. Dr. Regina Riphahn Ph.D. for another term. The economist, a member of the Leopoldina since 2007, is professor of statistics and empirical economic research at the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg.

This year, more than 35 highly talented students from all over Germany are also taking part in the annual meeting. They listen to the lectures at the event and have the opportunity to speak with the researchers. The apprenticeship program is financed by the “Friends of the Leopoldina” association.

The annual meeting will be streamed live on Leopoldina’s YouTube channel: The livestream can be seen today until 6.30 pm, before the evening lecture at 8.15 pm and on Saturday from 8.30 am. The lectures are given in English and German and interpreted simultaneously. The full program of the Annual Meeting and more information can be found on the Leopoldina website:


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