Academic Courses at the GHC


The GHC contributes to the academic teaching at the Graduate Institute currently through two courses:  

Global health is often moved forward through cosmopolitan moments, which break a gridlock of inaction. The course will explore 4 such moments: HIVAIDS, MDGs, SARS and in particular the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. This has brought significant weaknesses of the global health system to the fore in relation to outbreak preparedness, detection and response. It has also identified new challenges that require urgent action, including changes at the World Health Organization and in the United Nations system.  In the wake of the crisis many proposals have been put forward how to improve the global response to public health crisis. The course will analyze these and discuss how the international community responded at various levels of governance, what were the key lessons learned and which proposals for change are being put into practice. It will further explore the political and social determinants and economic impacts of the crisis.

This course will provide a critical overview of international health law within the context of contemporary international law as well as the structures and features of global health governance. The course will focus on the following issues underlying international health law and that will provide opportunities for critical analysis and a fresh approach to the subject: (1) Definition, scope and functions of international health law; (2) The role of WHO as the main institutional actor in health governance, and its normative role; (3) Interactions of public health concerns with international instruments and regimes such as those regulating international trade and investments, human rights, international security and environmental protection; (4) The main features and actors of "global health governance" and their role in the development of international health law; (5) A critical assessment of the adequacy of international health law for the protection and promotion of global health and prospects for its development