Keynote Speakers - EPHP 2016

Abdul Ghaffar

Abdul Ghaffar is an Executive Director of Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research. He has worked for over 30 years in low- and middle-income countries managing research for health; planning, designing and evaluating national health systems; and teaching health policy and management. He is a physician by training with a PhD in International Health from Johns Hopkins University.He started his career as a public health physician, and later worked at different leadership positions in Pakistan – Assistant Director-General of Policy and Planning; Deputy Director-General of International Health; and Director of the Health Services Academy, a national school of public health. He has played a leading role in establishing and managing policy and research fora involving civil society, policy makers and development partners, both at the national and international levels.

Bart Criel

Bart Criel, MD, DTM&H, MSc, PhD, is Professor of Public Health at the Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium. Dr Criel is currently Associate Professor and Head of the Unit of Health Financing, Department of Public Health. His main areas of work are the study of health care delivery systems and systems of social protection in health in low and middle income countries. As co-director of the Master (MSc) in Public Health, he is responsible for course management and teaching policies, in addition to teaching several modules. He is involved in a number of health systems research projects in various Sub-Saharan African countries and in charge of the institutional collaborations ITM has developed with sister academic institutions in DR Congo, India and Uganda.

R Balasubramaniam

Dr R. Balasubramaniam (Balu) is a development activist, social innovator, writer and a leadership trainer.He is a medical doctor by training, with specialization in Public administration from Harvard University.

Inspired by the life and teachings of Swami Vivekananda, he founded the Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement at the age of 19 and went on to work with the displaced and dispossessed forest-based tribes in H.D.Kote Taluk of Mysore District, Karnataka and this has grown to be one of India’s finest NGOs. He teaches and lectures at various universities across the globe, on issues related to Leadership, Governance of NGOs, Poverty and Development, and Global Health.

Sundari Ravindran T K

Sundari Ravindran has a PhD in Applied Economics and is currently professor at the Achutha Menon Centre for Health Science Studies, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Trivandrum, India.

Sundari is former co-editor of the international journal Reproductive Health Matters, and is currently a member of its editorial advisory board. She has worked with the World Health Organization at its headquarters in Geneva as Gender and Health Specialist, and with WHO’s regional offices in SE Asia Region and Western Pacific Region in various capacities.

Kabir Sheikh

Dr. Kabir Sheikh is a Senior Research Scientist and Adjunct Associate Professor at Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI). He is the director of the Health Governance Hub – PHFI’s interdisciplinary programme of health policy & systems research, and leads a team of researchers conducting cutting edge research on a range of thematic areas including human resources for health, decentralization and participatory governance, health stewardship and regulation, primary health care, and universal health coverage. As director of the Nodal Institute for the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research at PHFI, he has stewarded countrywide advances in the development of health systems research, notably the KEYSTONE India capacity building initiative – a partnership of 13 institutions led by PHFI.

Shreelata Rao

Shreelata is a Professor in the Health, Development and Society Group at the Azim Premji University, Bangalore, India. Under her leadership, the university has developed a Specialization in Health and Nutrition, preparing students to work at the community level on important public health challenges. She has previously worked with the Center for Global Health Research, University of Toronto, the World Bank and other international agencies for almost two decades. Her research interests have focused on health systems issues, and she has led a national study on the use of evidence in health sector decision making; providing policy guidance on the most cost-effective strategies to reduce avertable death and disability; and conducting focused studies on transparency and governance in the health sector.

Ravi Narayan

Dr. Ravi Narayan is a public health professional and health activist who currently works as an honorary Community Health Adviser at Centre for Public Health and Equity, Bangalore. His main interests include the community paradigm in health and the evolution of health as a social movement. He is one of the original co-initiators of Community Health Cell (CHC).

Dr. Ravi Narayan is an active member of the People’s Health Movement network. He was the joint convener of the Jan Swasthya Abhiyan till December 2002 and later coordinator of the Global Secretariat of People’s Health Movement from January 2003 to July 2006. Currently he is a member of WHO Advocacy Circle of PHM and also part of the PHM Steering Council and Coordinating Council.

Indrani Gupta

Indrani Gupta is Professor and Head of the Health Policy Research Unit of the Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi, India. Prof. Gupta received her Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Maryland, USA.  She has been instrumental in setting up a centre for health economics and policy research in her institute, which remains one of the few places in India that undertakes policy-oriented research on the health sector. Her work experience has been varied, including teaching and academic institutes, the World Bank and the Government of India. Her areas of interest cover a wide range of topics, and include demand for health and healthcare, health insurance and financing, poverty and health, costing and cost-effectiveness, economics of diseases, and international agreements and their impact on public health.   

N Devadasan

Co-founder and director of IPH, Deva Started his career in the forests of Nilgiris. He worked with the Adivasis of Gudalur for 10 years, building a comprehensive health system for them. Since then, he  has worked with WHO Orissa and then Delhi as in charge of communicable disease cluster and specialising in disease surveillance. In 2005, he founded IPH,Bengaluru and has been working closely in the area of health financing , access to health care and health management

 Wim Van Damme

Wim Van Damme is a professor in Public Health, with focus on International Health Policies at the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium. He is teaching public health to MPH students and at the Paris School of International Affairs. His fields of specialization are health services organization and health policy. He has recently been/is the principal investigator of different research projects: Health systems and access for the poor, Cambodia & China (PovIll); Impact of AIDS on health systems in Southern Africa, especially on human resources for health (ARVMAC); Impact of new international funding mechanisms on national health policies (INCO-GHIs). He is coaching PhD students from Asia and Africa. He is an advisor to Belgian Development Cooperation on issues related to international health policies. He is the vice-chair of the Technical Evaluation Reference Group (TERG) of the Global Fund. He had previously worked for Medecins Sans Frontieres for 12 years in numerous countries: Peru, Sudan, Guinea & Cambodia.


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