Future Earth Health








Photo: Jo Ann Deasy via Flickr

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The health of people around the world is tightly linked to the health of the places we inhabit.  In 2015, the Rockefeller Foundation-Lancet Commission on planetary health published its final report: Safeguarding human health in the Anthropocene epoch. The groundbreaking publication begins: “Far-reaching changes to the structure and function of the Earth's natural systems represent a growing threat to human health.”

The commission argues for the urgent development of a new avenue of research inquiry: planetary health. This call is a direct acknowledgement that greater health and wellbeing are attainable through “judicious attention to the human systems – political, economic, and social – that shape the future of humanity and Earth’s natural systems."

The Future Earth Health Knowledge-Action Network responds to this call, bringing health researchers together with other natural and social scientists, health and environmental policy experts and leaders in government, the private sector and civil society to promote  research for better, integrated understanding of the complex interactions between a changing global environment (such as pollution, disease pathogens and vectors, ecosystem services) and the health of human beings (including livelihoods, nutrition and well-being).  Long-term integrated observation systems to collect rigorous health, socioeconomic and environmental data will be encouraged.

Another major focus will be to build regional capacity to integrate and act on planetary health knowledge to enhance resilience, protect the environment and avert serious threats to health. This work takes place in the context of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals approved by the UN Member States in 2015, three of which deal directly or indirectly with health. Together with potential initial collaborators, including Future Earth oneHEALTH, the ICSU programme on Urban Health and Wellbeing, The Rockefeller Foundation - Lancet Commission on Planetary Health, the World Health Organization and the United Nations University’s International Institute for Global Health, Future Earth Health will further nourish collaboration with other on-going, leading research programmes outside Future Earth.

Key documents

Contact: health@futureearth.org

Development Team

The Development Team leads the planning and execution for the initial scoping of the Health Knowledge-Action Network for a limited time period. The Development Team also leads the establishment of a Steering Committee, which will take form starting from the Launch of the Health KAN in Taipei on May 20th, 2019.



Anthony Capon, Co-chair

University of Sydney

Kristie Ebi, Co-chair

University of Washington

Chadia Wannous

Towards A Safer World Network

Cristina Romanelli

Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)

Elisabet Lindgren

Stockholm Resilience Centre

Francesca Harris

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Fumiko Kasuga

Future Earth Secretariat

Joy Shumake-Guillemot


Judy Omumbo

The African Academy of Sciences

Kari Raivio

University of Helsinki

Montira Pongsiri

Oxford University

Osman Sankoh

Statistics Sierra Leone

Peter Daszak

EcoHealth Alliance

Advisory Group

The Advisory Group provides guidance and feedback on strategic directions, priorities, and progress towards agreed objectives for the Health Knowledge-Action Network. The group also facilitates and extends the network of experts and institutions in and outside of research communities. It is also expected to have visions of continuity through progressing stages of this Knowledge-Action Network and also certain flexibilities as a specific structural component to the Health Knowledge-Action Network.



Oyun Sanjaasuren, chair

Division of External Affairs, Green Climate Fund

Andy Haines

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Alex Ezeh

African Population and Health Research Centre

Antonio Saraiva

Universidade de São Paulo (USP), Escola Politécnica (EP)

Bruno Sobral

Colorado State University, Colorado School of Public Health

Candice Lung

International Global Atmospheric Chemistry (Core Project) project, Centre for Environmental Change, Academia Sinica

Christopher Golden

Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Planetary Health Alliance

David Cooper

Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity

Franz Gatzweiler

Institute of Urban Environment (IUE), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), and ICS-IAP-ISUH International Society for Urban Health

Howard Frumkin

University of Washington

John Balbus

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland

Jose Siri

Wellcome Trust, Our Planet Our Health

Josh Tewksbury

Future Earth (Colorado)

Keith Martin MD

Consortium of University for Global Health

Melanie Boeckmann

Bielefeld University, Germany

Qiyong Liu

China Centre for Disease Control

Stephane Blanc

Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

Timothy Bouley

World Bank Group

William Karesh

EcoHealth Alliance