About the Commission

The Lancet-University of Oslo Commission on Global Governance for Health was an independent academic commission.

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Members of the Commission gathered for its 2nd meeting in Arusha, Tanzania.

Global Governance for Health

The most pressing global challenge of our time is to secure a decent and healthy life for all. There is increasing recognition that the barriers and thus the solutions for achieving better health globally are not solely matters of health systems, but of politics and governance – the political determinants of health.

Improving health worldwide is therefore not simply about resolving the issues of technical intervention or resource mobilization, but also demands credible, legitimate decision-making processes and effective, efficient and equitable action. Multiple and complex global governance processes outside the health sector such as those relating to security, finance, trade, environment, agriculture, and migration, resoundingly impact human health – both negatively and positively. The mechanisms to protect and promote health in these governance arenas are however scarce, particularly at the global level.


The Commission was launched in Oslo in December 2011 in response to an invitation by The Lancet, and a call by the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jonas Gahr Støre for an academic commission on global governance for health, as a way of promoting new thinking that would move beyond the conventional wisdom. The Commission built upon the agenda of the Foreign Policy and Global Health Initiative and came to view their key task as bringing new research and analysis to bear regarding the need to engage beyond the health sector to solve key challenges in global health.

The result of the Commission's work was published in an extensive report in The Lancet on February 11th 2014.


The Commission comprised 18 renowned researchers and policy makers. The members were selected and invited by the University of Oslo according to criteria of bringing diverse geographical, disciplinary and personal perspectives to the table. Rector at the University of Oslo, Ole Petter Ottersen served as Chair, while Ms Jashodhara Dasgupta, who is a policy advocate on women’s health in India, served as the Vice Chair.

The Secretariat of the Commission coordinated all activities of the Commission, including the production of the Commission report.

The Resource Group, which consisted of researchers from The University of Oslo and Harvard Institute of Global Health, contributed to the writing of the Commission report and carried out research to support the Commission's deliberations. 

Published Oct. 27, 2011 11:27 AM - Last modified July 1, 2021 9:30 AM