19 November 2020, 13:00 - 14:00
Online event
Open to the public
This event is free - register below to attend

The global race for COVID-19 vaccines is in full swing. With the global COVID-19 caseload showing no signs of slowing, what do we know about when the first vaccines will be approved internationally? What are the criteria for a ‘good’ vaccine? How should vaccine distribution work? What is the appropriate role of governments and international relations in production and delivery?

Please note: This event will be livestreamed via Zoom and Youtube. Register below to receive joining instructions closer to the event date. 


  • Gifty Immanuel (infectious disease specialist)
  • Suerie Moon (Co-Director of the Global Health Centre, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva)
  • Srinath Reddy (President, Public Health Foundation of India)
  • John-Arne Røttingen (Visiting Fellow of Practice, Blavatnik School of Government)
  • Tobby Simon (Founder and President, Synergia Foundation)
  • Jonathan Wolff (Alfred Landecker Professor of Values and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government)


  • Maya Tudor (Associate Professor of Government and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government)

This event is co-hosted with Synergia Foundation.

Synergia Foundation

About the speakers

Dr Gifty Immanuel is an infectious disease specialist. He is a physician cum scientist in the field of human virology and global health. He has a PhD in Virology from India, an MD Physicians Degree from the Philippines, a Certificate in Global Infectious Disease from Harvard University, a Masters in Public Health from Australia, a Diploma in Vaccinology from Pasteur Institute Paris, and a PG Diploma in Zoonotic Diseases from India.

Dr Suerie Moon is Co-Director of the Global Health Centre at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva. Her work is broadly concerned with the intersection of global governance and public health. Her theoretical contributions to the field include conceptualising the global health system, defining the functions the system must perform to adequately protect public health, global public goods for health, and identifying the types of governance gaps and power disparities that contribute to health inequity. She has developed specialised policy expertise on how to achieve more globally equitable innovation and access to medicines; strengthen the global governance of outbreak preparedness and response; make trade, investment and intellectual property rules more health-sensitive; and address perennial weaknesses in development assistance for health. Her current research projects focus on the international sharing of outbreak-prone pathogens and related benefits, and new business models of pharmaceutical R&D. She also directs the Knowledge Network on Innovation and Access to Medicines, a project that aims to maximise the contributions of research and analysis to strengthening the pharmaceutical innovation system, a topic she has researched for over twenty years.

Prior to joining the Graduate Institute in 2016, she was Lecturer on Global Health at the Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health. She was Study Director of the Harvard-LSHTM Independent Panel on the Global Response to Ebola, head of Harvard’s research team on the Lancet Commission on Global Governance for Health, and co-directed the Project on Innovation and Access to Technologies for Sustainable Development at the Kennedy School of Government. She also co-founded and led the Forum on Global Governance for Health, a focal point at the university for research, debate and strategic convening on issues at the intersection of global governance and health. She has continued to teach and advise doctoral students as adjunct Lecturer at the Harvard Chan School. Suerie holds a BA in history from Yale, an MPA in international relations from Princeton, and a PhD in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

Dr K Srinath Reddy is President of the Public Health Foundation of India and formerly headed the Department of Cardiology at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). He was appointed as the First Bernard Lown Visiting Professor of Cardiovascular Health at the Harvard School of Public Health in (2009–13) and presently serves as an Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology at Harvard (2014–2023). He is also an Adjunct Professor of the Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University and Honorary Professor of Medicine at the University of Sydney. Reddy obtained his medical degree from Osmania Medical College (Hyderabad), his MD (Medicine) and DM (Cardiology) degrees from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (Delhi), and his MSc (Epidemiology) from McMaster University (Hamilton, Canada).

Professor John-Arne Røttingen is the Chief Executive of the Research Council of Norway and Adjunct Professor at the Department of Global Health and Population, Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health. He was the founding Chief Executive Officer of CEPI – Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations; Executive Director of Infection Control and Environmental Health at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health; and Professor of Health Policy at the Department of Health Management and Health Economics, Institute of Health and Society, University of Oslo. He has been Chief Executive of the Norwegian Knowledge Centre for the Health Services; Oxford Scholar at Wadham College; Fulbright Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School; Chair of the Board of the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research; and Chair of the Consultative Expert Working Group on Research and Development: Financing and Coordination (CEWG), World Health Organization. He received his MD and PhD from the University of Oslo, an MSc from Oxford University and an MPA from Harvard University.

Tobby Simon is the Founder and President of Synergia Foundation, a think tank that works at the confluence of geopolitics and geosecurity. He has over three decades of experience in affordable health care. Tobby worked pro bono with Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders for over a decade to build secure supply chains for retroviral, malarial and tuberculosis drugs from India. He has been involved in over 100 humanitarian missions in Africa, the Commonwealth of Independent States, Asia and Latin America. Tobby was the first to simulate an avian flu pandemic in India in 2007. He has been responsible for researching and developing a special anti-malarial injection for Western Africa. He has recently patented an intra-nasal nanotechnology platform for drugs targeting the central nervous system in Japan and the US. Tobby has a postgraduate degree in business, is a graduate of the Harvard Business School and was a Research Affiliate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Professor Jonathan Wolff is the Alfred Landecker Professor of Values and Public Policy and Governing Body Fellow at Wolfson College. He is currently developing the Alfred Landecker Programme, a research programme at the Blavatnik School which focuses on revitalising democracy and civil society. His other current work largely concerns equality, disadvantage, social justice and poverty, as well as applied topics such as public safety, disability, gambling and the regulation of recreational drugs. He has had a long-standing interest in health and health promotion, including questions of justice in health care resource allocation, the social determinants of health, and incentives and health behaviour. He has been a member of the Nuffield Council of Bioethics, the Academy of Medical Science working party on Drug Futures, the Gambling Review Body, the Homicide Review Group, an external member of the Board of Science of the British Medical Association, and a Trustee of GambleAware.



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