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Policy & Global Development

Governance and financing: keys to pandemic preparedness

ISGlobal co-hosts international event in Washington on governance and financing for pandemic preparedness and response


On 14 May, Washington D.C. hosted the seminar "From Negotiation to Action: Strengthening Governance of and Building Financing for Pandemic Preparedness and Response", co-hosted by ISGlobal, the Embassy of Spain in the United States and the Center for Global Development (CGD). The event brought together high-level experts and practitioners to exchange ideas on the governance and financing of pandemic preparedness and response initiatives.

In her institutional welcome, Ángeles Moreno, Ambassador of Spain to the United States, stressed the need to maintain effective financing instruments such as the World Bank Pandemic Fund. Rafael Vilasanjuan, Director of Policy and Global Development at ISGlobal, introduced the content of the seminar, stressing "the importance of bringing together voices from different sectors to discuss two key challenges from the perspective of the European Union and the United States: governance and financing", while Javier Guzmán, Director of Global Health Policy at CGD, highlighted "the importance of multilateral agreements and political pressure to achieve a new pandemic treaty".

In his keynote speech, Javier Padilla, Spain’s Secretary of State for Health, shared his vision of what is needed to tackle future pandemics: "It is important to strengthen health systems, establish public governance with leadership capacity, and promote the two-way transfer of knowledge and technology between the global North and South.

The importance of cooperation and equity in responding to pandemics

The first panel, which focused on governance, highlighted the importance of international cooperation and the need for greater ambition in multilateral action, as well as listening to the concerns of the global South. Concerning the agreement on pandemics being negotiated at WHO, the need to approach it from an equity perspective, ensuring the representation of civil society and low- and middle-income countries, was stressed.

The second panel, on financing, discussed the role of the Pandemic Fund as a catalyst for mobilising resources and fostering international cooperation. Panellists noted that long-term, sustainable funding is essential to fill existing gaps and ensure the participation of low- and middle-income countries in preparedness and response efforts.

The session was closed by economist Jeffrey Sachs, who called for greater transparency in pandemic response and more effective mechanisms for financing global health and preparedness for future pandemics.