Global Health Instruments

Negotiating and implementing global health instruments

International health instruments play an important role as tools for shaping collective responses to global health challenges. They have been under constant development and renewal for decades to address the increasing complexity of determinants and drivers of health. Further, they are closely linked to health diplomacy and governance, two other pillars of global health – as both object and outcome of multilateral and multisectoral negotiations for health and as tools for delivering and governing health.

Who is this programme for?


Policy-makers and practitioners involved in public health and international health cooperation, such as:

  • Governments representatives engaged in international health including from diplomatic missions

  • Representatives from international, regional and non-governmental organisations

  • Professionals in philanthropic organisations and academia


Programme highlights


  • Intensive three-day course to discuss the role of international legal health instruments in global health diplomacy and governance

  • Combine theory and practice through lectures, high-level panels and exercises

  • Meet in the world's global health capital

  • Led by the Global Health Centre (GHC) at the Graduate Institute


Programme Content


This course will introduce participants to contemporary global health and its governance challenges, the key types and characteristics of global health instruments, and the political environment and related health diplomacy processes. It will enable participants to better understand the features and challenges of existing instruments and to think critically about what kind of instruments are required in which settings and situations. The course will:

  • Introduce and analyse the overall structure, types and characteristics of the current international health instruments and mechanisms used in global health governance

  • Explain the dynamics, lessons learned and negotiation process for both hard and soft law, using examples of the FCTC, IHR 2005, international standards as well as selected codes, strategies and frameworks

  • Explore other health-related treaties such as the drug control conventions and environmental conventions

  • Experience and learn negotiation skills through negotiation simulation exercise on a global health instrument

  • Discuss global health instruments of the future

Course Programme 2018




The course is highly participatory, drawing on the national and international professional experiences of participants through a multi-disciplinary learning process. It includes lectures by internationally-renowned experts and negotiators, case studies, and working groups. Skill-building activities will complement the learning experience.

Format and duration


The format of the Executive Course on Global Health Instruments is a live virtual classroom. Sessions normally run from 09.00 to 18.00. The course includes one evening session.


Tuition for attending the full programme is 1,800 Swiss francs. The tuition fee includes teaching costs, course material and the use of Graduate Institute facilities. It does not include travel and accommodation expenses nor travel, health or personal insurances. Participants are advised to contract their own insurance.

For detailed information, please refer to our Terms and Conditions.



Participants who complete the course will receive a certificate of attendance from the Graduate Institute. Participants have the possibility to complement the course with a research paper and earn 3 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System). This course can also be recognised as one of the optional courses for module 2 of the Graduate Institute’s Certificate of Advanced Studies (CAS) in Global Health Diplomacy.



Up to 25 participants are admitted to the course.


Pre-course information

Accepted participants will be provided access to a protected website for more detailed information prior to the course.


Upcoming events


To ensure a high level of safety while maintaining the highest academic standards, the format of our programmes might be adjusted. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with our programme officer for more information.



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