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World Health Summit

Newsletter 09/2020: Welcoming Great Speakers to #WHS2020

Dear friends,

Despite the World Health Summit 2020 approaching quickly, we continue to add to the list of speakers. This year's many prominent speakers underscore the importance of our platform, which brings together experts from academia, politics, the private sector, and civil society. 

We are especially happy to announce that German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has confirmed his attendance. He will join Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission,  Tedros Adhanom Gebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization, and others in the 2020 Opening Ceremony, where António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations will give a video message. This year, we will be welcoming more than ten ministers from various countries.

Like all other sessions, the Opening Ceremony will be available online. Links can be accessed via our homepage. Digital participation will not require any registration.

The interactive program planner also provides information on each session topic. Aside from Pandemic Preparedness, this year's summit will focus on the role of the European Union in global health, the impact of climate change on health, and the advancement of SDG 3, good health and well-being for all, among others. We look forward to fruitful sessions on these important issues!

Please remain healthy, keep safe and join us for the World Health Summit 2020, October 25 to 27 in Berlin and digital!

Detlev Ganten
Founding President

Charles Ibingira
International President 2020

WHS 2020 Berlin and Digital


"The way out of the pandemic is through fair access to a vaccine for all people - everywhere."

Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Federal President, Germany

Opening Speaker of the World Health Summit 2020

Frank-Walter Steinmeier


Participation will be possible in person on-site (invitation only) and remote but active via Internet (free access)

In this very special year of the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Summit will take place as an on-site conference in Berlin and at the same time as a fully digital, interactive conference with cost-free availability of all sessions of the program.

On site (Kosmos, Berlin, Germany):

- Following all official stipulations established by federal and state governments
- Following all applicable rules regarding hygiene, protective gear, distancing and number of participants etc.


- Digital participation for the entire program (all sessions) available
- Possibility of worldwide participation via internet
- Widely used standard video conferencing software with intuitive features
- High reliability through load-balancing features for low-bandwidth situations
- One proper entry link per session available in the program planner:
- No registration needed
- Access possible via PC, tablet, smartphone
- Interactive formats through chat, Q&A function, screen and document sharing

Use #WHS2020 on Twitter to interact with us and other participants before, during and after the summit!

Get more information on details, speakers, and topics


The World Health Summit welcomes leading international experts from science, politics, business, and civil society each year. The following is a selection from this year's many high-level speakers:

- Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Federal President, Germany
- Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission
Gerd Müller, Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Germany
Jens Spahn, Federal Minister of Health, Germany
Marta Temido, Minister of Health, Portugal
Tomaž Gantar, Minister of Health, Slowenia
António Guterres, General-Secretary, United Nations
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization WHO
Michelle Bachelet, High Commissioner for Human Rights, United Nations
Christian Drosten, Director, Institute of Virology, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Lothar H. Wieler, President, Robert Koch Institute
Heyo Kroemer, CEO, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director, UNAIDS
Andrea Ammon, Director, European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control
Nanette Cocero, Global President Vaccines, Pfizer, USA
Victor Dzau, President, National Academy of Medicine, USA
Jeremy Farrar, Director, Wellcome Trust
Henrietta H. Fore, Executive Director, UNICEF
George F. Gao, Director, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention
Paul Hudson, CEO, Sanofi
John Nkengasong, Director, Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention
Michael Ryan, Executive Director, WHO Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization WHO

More speakers


Pandemic Preparedness in the Age of COVID-19: Global Cooperation not Competition
The COVID 19 pandemic has once again shown that we need everyone to get involved in a massive effort to keep the world safe. Researchers are working at high speed to understand new viruses, develop treatments and vaccines to curb pandemics and prevent future outbreaks.

Strengthening the Role of the European Union in Global Health
Germany has announced that global health will be a priority during its 2020 EU presidency, in cooperation with its trio-partners Portugal and Slovenia. This presents a significant opportunity to help identify interventions in areas like development, health, research, environment, and trade that all EU members can implement to achieve SDG3.

Accelerating the SDG3 Global Action Plan for Health and Well-Being
The Global Action Plan for Healthy Lives and Well-Being for All brings together 12 multilateral health, development, and humanitarian agencies to better support countries and accelerate progress towards health-related Sustainable Development Goals. At the World Health Summit, representatives of the signatory agencies will present updates on the Action Plan, and its challenges and successes.

Digital Health & AI for Pandemic Preparedness
With the WHO Director-General 2020 "Global Strategy on Digital Health,” the stakes for advancing a truly global market in digital health have taken on a new dimension. The next step is ensuring a transformative and multi-stakeholder ecosystem for the sustainability of innovations and growth of digital public goods, their economic viability, scale-up, and inclusivity.



"Germany has done nothing better than other countries, it just acted earlier"

World Health Summit President and Christian Drosten, Head Virologist at Charité Berlin, gave an exclusive double interview discussing the surprises, challenges, and most important lessons of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the full interview

Politico - Germany eyes global health ambitions as U.S. steps back 

World Health Summit President Detlev Ganten, Ilona Kickbusch and other experts comment on Europe's role in filling the gap the US has left by exiting the World Health Organization. Read more


The World Health Summit would like to thank our media partners, including:

Der Tagesspiegel is Berlin’s number-one journalistic voice. Its award-winning journalists “identify the causes of things” and emphasize the paper’s independent, liberal position. 312,000 noticeably young and well-educated readers appreciate this professional ethic day after day. Daily exclusive background information for decision-makers from the health sector can be found in Tagesspiegel Background Gesundheit & E-Health – especially for World Health Summit-participants: register now for a 4-week free trial subscription. Click here

Deutsche Welle is a longstanding media partner of the World Health Summit. Germany’s international broadcaster provides objective journalism for a global audience, reflecting different regional perspectives. DW actively supports those who stand up for democracy, human rights and civil society.
With its global coverage of the pandemic DW is keeping users around the world informed about all developments concerning COVID-19.


World Health Summit, Robert Bosch Stiftung and Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities cooperate in the "Health of Tomorrow" project

The topic "Health of tomorrow" is directly linked to the 3rd Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of the United Nations (UN) "Health for all". To achieve this, a continuous dialogue between civil society, science and politics is necessary. Promoting this dialogue is the aim of the new cooperation between the World Health Summit, Robert Bosch Stiftung GmbH and the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities. More (German)

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World Health Summit
WHS Foundation GmbH
Charitéplatz 1
10117 Berlin, Germany