Our international Partnership with the World Health Organization


In 2005, our Department of Public Health and Policy, along with the Social Determinants of Health Research Group, was designated a World Health Organisation (WHO) Collaborating Centre for Policy Research on Social Determinants of Health.

The WHO Collaborating Centre, led by Professor Margaret Whitehead, has an international reputation for debating and questioning inequalities in health and well-being. It works to improve provision for patients. A team of 32 researchers, and technical and administrative staff support our academics to deliver this ground-breaking research.


Our multidisciplinary teams focus on evaluating policies, and developing complex interventions. The main aims are to improve living and working conditions to alleviate the impacts of poverty, and increase access to effective preventative and therapeutic services. Our team researches both the societal causes and the adverse consequences of ill health in order to investigate the social pathways to and from health inequalities.


The innovative methods and analytic frameworks developed by the Centre are now used internationally, including:

  • Methods for prospective health impact assessment and equity audits of services
  • Approaches to assessing health systems from a household perspective
  • Evidence synthesis of non-healthcare policies and their impact on public health

The research based training environment of the Centre is boosted by active collaborations with a range of external research consortia and international networks, including: