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Friday, April 16, 2010

Canary In The Coal Mine: H1N1 And Global Threat Preparedness In The 21st Century

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Session Description

Pandemics pose an inarguably daunting global threat: they are hard to predict, spread globally at rapid speed, impact people directly, and have the potential to stop commerce. The H1N1 virus presented us with the first pandemic of the 21st century, but how well did the world respond? This crosssector conversation engages academics, policy-makers, social entrepreneurs, and audience members around what worked, what didn’t, and what can be learned about the roles of government, industry, the social sector, and media when it comes to tackling a global threat.


When | Where

11:00 - 12:30 Friday, April 16

Session leaders

  • Angela McLean Speaker
    Professor of Mathematical Biology, All Souls College, University of Oxford
    Angela McLean studied Mathematics at Oxford and received her PhD in Biomathematics from Imperial College. She held a Royal Society URF in Oxford’s Zoology Department and in Immunology at the Pasteur Institute in Paris. She is now a Senior Research Fellow at All Souls College, Professor of Mathematical Biology in the Department of Zoology and Director of the Institute for Emerging Infections in the James Martin 21st Century School. Angela was elected to the Royal Society in 2009.
  • David Heymann Speaker
    Chairman, Health Protection Agency, UK
    Dr. David Heymann is the Chairman of the Health Protection Agency. Previously, he was Assistant Director-General for Health Security and Environment at WHO. Dr Heymann worked for 13 years in sub-Saharan Africa for US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He is a recipient of the American Public Health Association Award for Excellence and was named to the United States Institute of Medicine. Currently he is also the Director of the Global Health Security Centre at Chatham House.
  • Larry Brilliant Speaker
    Acting Chair, Skoll Global Threats Fund
    Larry Brilliant, MD, MPH, is the author of Sometimes Brilliant: The Impossible Adventures of a Spiritual Seeker and Visionary Physician Who Helped Conquer the Worst Disease in History. He currently serves as the acting Chairman of the Board of the Skoll Global Threats Fund whose mission is to confront global threats like: Pandemics, Climate Change, Water, Nuclear Proliferation and the Middle East Conflict. He is also a Senior Adviser at the Jeff Skoll Group. Dr. Larry was formerly Skoll Global Threats Fund’s President and CEO. Before that, he was Vice President of Google and Executive Director of He is board certified in preventive medicine and public health and co-founder of The Seva Foundation, an international NGO whose programs and grantees have given back sight to more than 3.5 million blind people in over 20 countries. Dr. Larry lived in India for more than a decade working as a United Nations medical officer where he played a key role in the successful World Health Organization (WHO) smallpox eradication program in South Asia. He was professor at the University of Michigan and founding chairman of the National Biosurveillance Advisory Subcommittee. Prizes: Time 100, TED Prize, two honorary doctorates. He is on the boards of the Skoll Foundation and Salesforce Foundation.
  • Mark Smolinski Speaker
    Chief Medical Officer and Director, Global Health Threats, Skoll Global Threats Fund
    Mark has led global efforts toward early detection and rapid response to emerging threats. His work has brought together governments, NGOs, Academia, and private industry in partnerships across national borders in Southern Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Russia, and SE Asia. In 2006, Mark joined the start-up team at as the director of the Predict and Prevent Initiative. Prior to Google, Mark served as Vice President for Biological Programs at the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a public charity directed by CNN founder Ted Turner and former U.S. Senator Sam Nunn. While at NTI, Mark led the development of a regional disease surveillance system linking Israel, Jordan, and the Palestinian Authority, demonstrating the power of health as a diplomatic tool even in areas of longstanding conflict. In 2003, the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences released a landmark report, the Emergence, Detection, and Response to Microbial Threats to Health for which Mark was the study director. He has also served as an advisor to the World Health Organization, Senior Advisor to the U.S. Surgeon General and Assistant Secretary of Health, and an Epidemic Intelligence Officer at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Mark was a member of the investigation team that discovered hantavirus in 1993 in Southwestern United States. A native of Michigan, Mark holds a B.S. from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where he also received his M.D. He received his M.P.H. from the University of Arizona. Mark is a trained Internist and board certified in Preventative Medicine and Public Health. WIRED magazine’s 2008 Smart List of 15 people the next president should listen to included Mark, a.k.a. the threat detective.
  • Seth Berkley Speaker
    President and CEO, International AIDS Vaccine Initiative
    Seth Berkley is President & CEO of the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, a nonprofit organisation working to ensure the development of preventive HIV vaccines for use throughout the world. Prior to founding IAVI, Berkley held positions at The Rockefeller Foundation, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and the Carter Center. Berkley, a widely recognised leader in global health, was named by TIME magazine as “one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World.