New research institute in Lebanon to address regional health priorities

October 03, 2017

A nurse vaccinates a child in Beirut, Lebanon.

Dominic Chavez/World Bank

The American University of Beirut has announced the establishment of the Global Health Institute to serve as a regional hub for interdisciplinary research and capacity building in global health.

Large-scale humanitarian crises are changing the nature and extent of the demand for health service delivery in the Middle East and North Africa. The region is also transitioning from traditional to more westernized diets, giving rise to higher rates of obesity and other chronic diseases. The newly established Global Health Institute will address such pressing health and development challenges through applied research programs and strong intellectual and policy leadership.

Announced by the American University of Beirut (AUB) on July 19, 2017, the Institute is the first of its kind in the region. IDRC is supporting the Institute’s establishment and initial programming with a $1.7 million grant to the AUB from 2017 to 2022. "We are delighted to provide catalytic support to the Global Health Institute. Building on decades of collaboration between IDRC and the American University of Beirut, the decision to work together on this exciting endeavour represents a mutual desire to develop and support research leaders in the region, and to raise the profile and quality of interdisciplinary global health research on pressing issues requiring dedicated and sustained attention," said IDRC President Jean Lebel.

The Institute has a number of carefully selected interdisciplinary programs directed by faculty members from various health units across AUB, including the Conflict Medicine Program, Refugee Health Program, and Nutrition, Obesity, and Related Diseases Program. The Institute addresses health issues that are critical in the Middle East and North Africa, but these are not unique to the region — the Institute will also serve as an incubator for investigating innovative methods to address health challenges of global relevance.

Read the AUB press release.