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IPH Bengaluru Annual Day Oration 2020

IPH Bengaluru Annual Day Oration 2020


Dr. Gita Sen

About Orator



Dr. Gita Sen
Founder & Member of the Executive Committee of Development Alternatives with Women.
Currently serves on the Scientific & Technical Advisory Group of WHO’s Department of Reproductive Health and Research.
Co-chair of PAHO’s Technical Advisory Group on Gender Equality and Health.
Gender & Health Scholar with Multiple academic affiliations to Indian and Global academic centers of excellence.

IPH Oration series is a public event, please feel free to disseminate the flyer among your networks – Download Flyer

Consultancy project with the State Anti-Tobacco Cell, Gov of Karnataka

Consultancy project with the State Anti-Tobacco Cell, Gov of Karnataka

Consultancy project with the State Anti-Tobacco Cell

In a project commissioned by the State Anti-Tobacco Cell (Dept Health and Family Welfare Services, GOK), Riddhi and Upendra, researchers at the DEEP project at IPH, with the help of intern Neema Joseph, historically mapped and analyzed various tobacco-related litigations in Karnataka high court in order to identify the stakeholders as well as common laws/arguments used by these stakeholders in shaping tobacco regulations in Karnataka. The project sought to answer two main questions:

1.     What have been the legislations and major arguments used by petitioners in litigations challenging tobacco control regulations in Karnataka?

2.     Who have been the stakeholders engaged directly in litigations related to tobacco in Karnataka?

Upon completion of the study, we presented this work to members of the Tobacco Control Alliance in a meeting organized by the department on 26th July 2020 and later submitted a report of the study physically to the Deputy Director, Dr. Selvaraj who also leads the tobacco control initiative. We discussed a possible follow-up to the study, centred around convening of lawyers and select petitioners, and studying a few key litigations in Karnataka. We believe such insights can help the state government pre-empt legal challenges as well as develop an effective stakeholder-specific response to legal challenges. The team hopes to write and publish a paper based on this work.

Download the ReportHere

LifeFirst – Consultancy Project with Narotam Sekhsaria Foundation

A team from the Chronic Health Conditions and Public Policies cluster at IPH had undertaken a consultancy project with Narotam Sekhsaria Foundation and Salaam Bombay Foundation. This project involved the evaluation of the LifeFirst program, a standardized tobacco- and supari- cessation program conceived and implemented by the Salaam Bombay Foundation and Narotam Sekhsaria Foundation since 2012. The Program targets students studying in 7th to 9th grades in corporation (local government) funded/managed schools in Mumbai city.

The study design, a prospective quasi-experimental design, was conceptualised by researchers Upendra and Pragati at IPH and the program was implemented by the team in Mumbai. The analysis of the study data was led by Amiti with the support of Upendra and Pragati and we found that the program was indeed effective, where the program not only reduced the rates of tobacco and supari use significantly, but also served as a protective factor, protecting against new uptake of tobacco and supari use. This is an important finding: schools are an excellent site for health promotion activities but are rarely used as much as they should and furthermore, such school programs are rarely evaluated for their effectiveness. This collaborative study delivers on both, the health promotion program and the evaluation of this program. The present consultancy was closed with the completion of the project and submission of the final report. We look forward to further collaboration with the team at Narotam Sekhsaria Foundation & Salaam Bombay Foundation.

National Summit on Tobacco or Health – 2020

National Summit on Tobacco or Health – 2020

On May 29th, 2020 the National Summit was held virtually, the main theme was on “Protecting youth from industry manipulation and preventing them from tobacco and nicotine use” , and organised “by Resource Centre for Tobacco Control (E-RCTC), PGIMER Chandigarh in collaboration with Strategic Institute of Public Health Education and Research (SIPHER), Chandigarh and The Union South-East Asia (The Union).” The summit (schedule accessible here) was intended to train public health professionals and tobacco control practitioners on the ways in which the tobacco industry seeks to influence the youth; and the strategies and tactics that can be applied to keep the tobacco industry in check. 

Dr. Upendra Bhojani was invited to be a participant in the plenary session on the above theme at the Summit and the recording can be accessed here.

“My family member is in prison”:  Insights from research and interventions with families of the incarcerated

“My family member is in prison”: Insights from research and interventions with families of the incarcerated

Shivangi Gupta, a psychotherapist and researcher enrolled in a doctoral programme at Virginia Tech University, will be presenting a talk titled ““My family member is in prison”: Insights from research and interventions with families of the incarcerated”

Her talk aims to shed light on the psychosocial health and experiences of children and families who have a parent/family member in prison. It endeavours to facilitate participants’ knowledge of the educational, social as well as emotional functioning of children of the incarcerated, by drawing on the findings of a two-year long ICMR funded qualitative research study (2017-2019), undertaken at the Department of Social Work, Jamia Millia Islamia. Through this talk, Shivangi will focus on the experiences of these families, as well as their incarcerated family members, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the institutional and non-institutional support mechanisms available to these families as well as the challenges inherent in accessing these systems. Shivangi will weave insights from secondary research as well as her own experience of undertaking social interventions with the families of the incarcerated to provide a firsthand, comprehensive understanding.

You are invited to attend the seminar in person or join the live seminar via Zoom using the link provided at the top of the page and write to to stay in touch.


Shivangi Gupta



Project Aesha & Virgina Tech University




12:00 pm – 1:00 pm


Institute of Public Health, Bengaluru


Report of the Expert consultation to review the design of India Health Policy & Systems Research Fellowship Program held on 24 June 2020

Report of the Expert consultation to review the design of India Health Policy & Systems Research Fellowship Program held on 24 June 2020

Strengthening health systems requires a system thinking lens, an acknowledgement of complexity in bringing about transformational change as well as putting people at the center of change. Approaches that integrate these are often lacking due to limited capacity in public health research institutions and in the community to practice a health systems approach applying state-of-the-art public health and social science research methods. HSTP and IPH conceived the fellowship program to improve the capacity for health policy and systems research (HPSR) in India. Over the last few months, a team from both these organizations consulted Global and Indian HPSR experts to put together a draft fellowship program structure and curriculum. In June 2020, an expert consultation was held to review this early draft. Thirty HPSR practitioners from India and across the globe participated to review the program and provided their expert advice.
At the workshop, the HSTP-IPH team presented an overview and a draft curriculum of the proposed training program. All participants of the workshop were very encouraging of this initiative and reinforced the need for the training program to be contextually relevant to India. Experts advised regarding the design and structure of the course, content, teaching methods and the pedagogy of the training program.
Some of the key recommendations that emerged from the workshop include:
·        Focus on the core competencies of HPSR – Complexity, Systems Thinking and Multi-disciplinarity
·        Need for the participants to ‘unlearn’ the linear processes in their research disciplines and accept the non-linear approaches of HPSR
·        Larger and focused emphasis on policy engagement including the skills to analyze policies, conduct a stakeholder analysis and the ability to engage with policy makers.
·        Expand the content to include evaluations, secondary data analysis and evidence synthesis
·        Detail out the mentorship phase and clarify the roles of the mentors.
·        Use innovative teaching tools like Indian case studies, role play, group learning, simulations, and debates.
·        Develop collaborations with other institutions
·        Refine the process of participant selection. Researchers from different disciplines should be selected and even non researchers, including government officers, may be considered. Moving forward, the team will work with key HPSR experts and other actors in preparing a revised curriculum based on the discussions at the workshop. An action plan for the process of the redesign has been developed and includes the use of a conceptual framework consisting of key program elements, content, and pedagogy to identify the various comments and suggestions made at the workshop. The inputs from the workshop will be thematically analysed to identify categories of comments that need resolution. The team will redesign the curriculum based on this analysis across multiple levels of the proposed curriculum (content, mentorship, online teaching, and pedagogy.  Key values and core competencies will be used as guidance to resolve recommendations that may be in opposition. This redesigned plan shall then be presented to a panel of HPSR experts to further refine the final curriculum.