The World Health Summit is the international platform for global health. It brings together stakeholders from politics, science, the private sector, and civil society from around the world to set the agenda for a healthier future and well-being for all. The World Health Summit strengthens exchange, stimulates innovative solutions to health challenges, fosters global health as a key political issue, and promotes the global health debate in the spirit of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The World Health Summit as a conference and strategic forum is held each October in Berlin with around 3,000 participants on-site and more than 10,000 online. In addition to the main conference there are annual World Health Summit Regional Meetings in different parts of the world, where local and regional topics come to the forefront. The respective meeting is hosted by the M8 Alliance member holding the World Health Summit International Presidency, which rotates every year.

Throughout the year, the World Health Summit organizes various formats and fosters several initiatives. Among them are the WHS Global Health Dialogues, which regularly bring together thought-leaders and decision-makers to discuss the most urgent global health topics in an exclusive and intimate setting.

The World Health Summit is organized and administered by the WHS Foundation GmbH, a 100% subsidiary of Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and was founded in 2009 on the occasion of the 300th anniversary of Charité. President of the World Health Summit is Prof. Dr. Axel R. Pries.

The academic foundation of the World Health Summit is the M8 Alliance of Academic Health Centers, Universities and National Academies. This unique international network currently consists of more than 30 academic institutions worldwide.

Participants & Speakers

  • Leading scientists and medical professionals
  • Ministers and civil servants
  • High-ranking officials at international organizations
  • CEOs from industry and civil society
  • Young professionals and students


  • Improve health worldwide
  • Find answers to health challenges, guided by science
  • Bring together stakeholders from all sectors and all regions of the world
  • Facilitate open dialogue
  • Strengthen international cooperations
  • Set health agendas
  • Foster the recognition of global health as a key political issue
  • Promote the global health debate in the spirit of the UN Sustainable Development Goals


  • M8 Alliance Declaration
  • Statements and recommendations for national academies, governments, and international organizations


  • Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany (since 2009)
  • President of the French Republic (since 2009)
  • Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) (since 2019)



Axel R. Pries, Germany

Founding President

Detlev Ganten, Germany
(President until 2020)

International Presidents

2024 Sophia Zoungas & Christina Mitchell, Australia
2023 Adnan Hyder, USA
2022 Eugenio Gaudio & Luciano Saso, Italy
2021 Charles Ibingira, Uganda
2020 Charles Ibingira, Uganda
2019 Ali Jafarian, Iran
2018 João Gabriel Silva & Fernando Regateiro, Portugal
2017 Hélène Boisjoly, Canada
2016 Antoine Flahault, Switzerland
2015 Shunichi Fukuhara, Japan
2014 José Otávio Auler Jr., Brazil
2013 John Eu-Li Wong, Singapore
2012 Michael J. Klag, USA
2011 Steve Wesselingh, Australia
2010 Stephen K. Smith, UK
2009 Axel Kahn, France

General Topics

  • Basic Biological & Medical Research
  • Clinical & Patient Research
  • Specific Diseases & Disorders
  • Diagnostics & Therapy
  • Medical Technology & Engineering
  • Health Policies & Systems
  • Universal Health Coverage
  • Translational Science & Medicine
  • Public Health & Prevention
  • Lifestyle, Physical Activity & Nutrition
  • Patient Safety
  • Healthcare Facilities
  • Drugs & Vaccines
  • Regulatory Aspects
  • Health Visions, Strategies & Ethics
  • Evolutionary Medicine
  • Demographic Change & Healthy Aging
  • Global Health & Development

M8 Alliance

  • Academic foundation of the World Health Summit
  • 31 members worldwide
  • Growing network of excellent universities, research institutions, and medical branches of national academies of science
  • Rotation of the annual international presidency of the World Health Summit
  • Organizes annual Regional Meetings, Expert Meetings, and Summer Schools

World Health Summit Regional Meetings

2024 Melbourne, Australia
2023 Washington DC, USA
2022 Rome, Italy
2021 Kampala, Uganda
2020 Meeting in Kampala, Uganda postponed due to COVID-19
2019 Kish Island, Iran
2018 Coimbra, Portugal
2017 Montreal, Canada
2016 Geneva, Switzerland
2015 Kyoto, Japan
2014 São Paulo, Brazil
2013 Singapore