The University confers an honorary doctorate on Ilona Selma Kickbusch for her commitment to global health governance.

  • Scientific Culture and Innovation Unit
  • March 23rd, 2023
Ilona Selma Kickbusch, expert in global health governance
Ilona Selma Kickbusch, expert in global health governance

Ilona Selma Kickbusch (Munic, 1948), professor emeritus at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva and expert in global health, with a special interest in global health governance, will be conferred an honorary doctorate by the University of Valencia (UV) on Friday 24 March. The ceremony, chaired by the rector of the academic institution, Mavi Mestre, will be held in the auditorium of the historic building of La Nau, will begin at 11 am and can be followed live.

The recognition of Ilona Selma Kickbusch, who has played an outstanding role in the world of political science, sociology and health promotion, all with a feminist perspective, has been promoted by the UV as a consequence of "her unquestionable leadership in the field of health promotion", which was "recognised and summarised" by the prestigious journal The Lancet in their article “Ilona Kickbusch: a global health reformer”.

In addition, the appointment as honoris causa, the highest distinction awarded by the UV to a person for their academic, scientific or cultural career, is based on Kickbusch's "active collaboration" with UV teams in various lines of work such as health challenges from a gender perspective, health literacy in strategies for patient training and advocacy, and global health initiatives. José María Martín Moreno, professor at the Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, will read the lecture. Fabiola Maria Meco, Professor of Civil Law, is the other patron of the award.

Currently, Kickbusch is co-president of the Council of the World Health Summit, advisor to the Director-General of the World Health Organization(OMS), vice-president of the European Health Forum in Gastein, founder and promoter of the Young Leaders for Health Network, and member of the Council Advisory Women in Global Health, among others. Since 2010 she has been director of the Global Health Programme at the University Institute of International and Development Studies, which she presides.

Ilona Selma Kickbusch, a graduated and PhD in Political Science and Sociology from the University of Konstanz (Germany), has been Senior Advisor for the Millennium Development Goals of the  Pan American Health Organization and Senior Advisor for Health Policy at the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health. She has worked in the area of Health Education at the WHO European Regional Office and coordinated the first International Conference on Health Promotion in Ottawa, where she played a decisive role in the Ottawa Charter, the key to Public Health. She has also been Director of Health Promotion, Education and Communication at WHO headquarters in Geneva.

Dr. Kickbush has received numerous awards and distinctions, including the WHO Medal for her role in the Ottawa Declaration, as well as honorary doctorates from the University of Labem (Czech Republic), the University of Girona, the Honorary Doctorate from the University of Gothenburg and the Honorary Professorship from the Charité University of Berlin. 

You can follow the live broadcast at the following link: