Making a difference in global health

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The International Union for Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE) is over half a century old and draws its strength from being a unique worldwide, independent and professional association of individuals and organizations committed to improving the health and wellbeing of the people through education, community action and the development of healthy public policy.

The IUHPE has proven to be relevant and resilient after periods of major change in the world’s external environment and within the field of health promotion. Health promotion aims to empower people to control their own health by gaining control over the underlying factors that influence health. As long as these factors – peace, shelter, food, income, a stable eco-system, sustainable resources, social justice and equity – remain unchallenged, the IUHPE’s existence and activities are vital to accomplish its mission to promote global health and wellbeing, and to contribute to the achievement of equity in health between and within countries of the world.

Inequalities in health status are increasing in accordance with increasing inequalities in socio-economic status. The IUHPE can make a significant contribution to advocacy and action to redress the growing imbalance in the distribution of the world’s resources between high-income and low- and middle-income countries, as well as among different population groups. The burden of poor health continues to fall disproportionately on lower income countries and the most vulnerable populations. The resulting social and economic insecurity is rapidly translating into an increasing gap between rich and poor within all countries in access to and application of the resources necessary for health.


The mission of the IUHPE is to promote global health and to contribute to the achievement of equity in health between and within countries of the world.

The IUHPE fulfills its mission by building and operating an independent, global, professional network of people and institutions to encourage the free exchange of ideas, knowledge, know-how, experiences, and the development of relevant collaborative projects, both at global and regional levels.


  • Greater equity in the health of populations between and within countries of the world;
  • Effective alliances and partnerships to produce optimal health promotion outcomes;\
  • Broadly accessible evidence-based knowledge and practical experience in health promotion;
  • Excellence in policy and practice for effective, quality health promotion; and
  • High levels of capacity in individuals, organisations and countries to undertake health promotion activities.


To achieve these goals the IUHPE will pursue the following:

  • Increased investment in health promotion by governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, academic institutions and the private sector;
  • An increase in organizational, governmental and inter-governmental policies and practices that result in greater equity in health between and within countries;
  • Improvements in policy and practice of governments at all levels, organizations and sectors that influence the determinants of the health of populations;
  • Strong alliances and partnerships among all sectors based on agreed ethical principles, mutual understanding and respect;
  • Activities that contribute to the development, translation and exchange of knowledge and practice that advance the field of health promotion;
  • The wide dissemination of knowledge to health promotion practitioners as well as to policy-makers, government officials and other key individuals and organizations;
  • A strong and universally accessible knowledge base for effective, quality health promotion;
  • Improved mechanisms for the exchange of ideas, experience and knowledge that promote health and wellbeing;
  • A global forum for mutual support and professional advancement of members; and
  • Capacity-building opportunities for individuals and institutions to better carry out health promotion initiatives and advocacy efforts.


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