The IUHPE at a glance

The International Union for Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE) is over 70 years old and draws its strength from being a unique worldwide, independent and professional association of individuals and organisations committed to improving the health and wellbeing of the people through education, community action and the development of healthy public policy.

The IUHPE has proven to be relevant and resilient after periods of major change in the world's external environment and within the field of health promotion. Health promotion aims to empower people to control their own health by gaining control over the underlying factors that influence health. As long as these factors - peace, shelter, food, income, a stable eco-system, sustainable resources, social justice and equity - remain unchallenged, the IUHPE's existence and activities are vital to accomplish its mission to promote global health and wellbeing, and to contribute to the achievement of equity in health between and within countries of the world.


Inequalities in health status are increasing in accordance with increasing inequalities in socio-economic status. The IUHPE can make a significant contribution to advocacy and action to redress the growing imbalance in the distribution of the world's resources between high-income and low- and middle-income countries, as well as among different population groups. The burden of poor health continues to fall disproportionately on lower income countries and the most vulnerable populations. The resulting social and economic insecurity is rapidly translating into an increasing gap between rich and poor within all countries in access to and application of the resources necessary for health.


The vision of the IUHPE is a world where all people achieve optimum health and wellbeing.


The values critical to the achievement of this vision include:

  • Respect - for the innate dignity of all people; for cultural identity; for cultural diversity; and for natural resources and the environment;

  • Inclusion and involvement of people in making the decisions that shape their lives and impact upon their health and wellbeing;

  • Equity in health, social and economic outcomes for all people;

  • Accountability and transparency– within governments, organisations and communities;

  • Sustainability;

  • Social justice for all people; and

  • Compassion and empowerment.


The IUHPE’s mission is to promote global health and wellbeing and to contribute to the achievement of equity in health between and within countries of the world.


The IUHPE fulfills its mission by building and operating an independent, global, professional network of people and institutions to encourage the free exchange of ideas, knowledge, know-how, experiences, and the development of relevant collaborative projects, both at global and regional levels.


Read our Corporate Brochure in English, French, or Spanish.


The IUHPE aims to achieve the following goals:

  • Greater equity in the health of populations between and within countries of the world;

  • Effective alliances and partnerships to produce optimal health promotion outcomes;

  • Broadly accessible evidence-based knowledge and practical experience in health promotion; 

  • Excellence in policy and practice for effective, quality health promotion; and

  • High levels of capacity in individuals, organisations and countries to undertake health promotion activities.


To achieve its goals the IUHPE will pursue the following objectives:

  • Increased investment in health promotion by governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations, academic institutions and the private sector;

  • An increase in organisational, governmental and inter-governmental policies and practices that result in greater equity in health between and within countries;

  • Improvements in policy and practice of governments at all levels, organisations and sectors that influence the determinants of the health of populations;

  • Strong alliances and partnerships among all sectors based on agreed ethical principles, mutual understanding and respect;

  • Activities that contribute to the development, translation and exchange of knowledge and practice that advance the field of health promotion;

  • The wide dissemination of knowledge to health promotion practitioners as well as to policy-makers, government officials and other key individuals and organisations;

  • A strong and universally accessible knowledge base for effective, quality health promotion;

  • Improved mechanisms for the exchange of ideas, experience and knowledge that promote health and wellbeing;

  • A global forum for mutual support and professional advancement of members; and

  • Capacity-building opportunities for individuals and institutions to better carry out health promotion initiatives and advocacy efforts.


The IUHPE’s core mission lies in making the case for effective health promotion and the development and implementation of healthy public policy. Our purpose is to influence and facilitate the development and implementation of health promotion knowledge, strategies and projects. Advocacy is one of the central strategies of the IUHPE to accomplish its mission and as such has a potentially large scope under which to work. 



Most recent:

  • People-Planet-Health, a position statement to support policy development on planetary health and wellbeing by the World Health Organization, December 2021.
  • Prise de position conjointe RÉFIPS/UIPES:. La promotion de la santé en temps de crise.
    En tant que réseaux internationaux en promotion de la santé, l'UIPES et le RÉFIPS se sont unis pour positionner le domaine de la promotion de la santé en cette période de pandémie.
    The document is also available in English
    Spanish and Italian.
  • A Health Promotion Focus on COVID-19. Keep the Trojan horse out of our health systems: Promote health for ALL in times of crisis and beyond!, EUPHA-HEALTH PROMOTION, IUHPE and UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education 

    The Health Promotion section of the European Public Health Association, the International Union for Health Promotion and Education and the UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education share five talking points to contribute with a health promotion perspective to public health discussion on the implications of this pandemic.

    The document is available in English, FrenchItalian, Portuguese and Spanish 

  • COVID-19: Blending social determinants of health and intensifying existing health inequities. Statement of the IUHPE Global Working Group on Social Determinants of Health. 
    The document is available in EnglishFrench and Spanish.


A summary is available in English, French and Spanish.

Learn more about IUHPE's involvement in the preparation of the UN High-level Meeting on NCDs and read the IUHPE statements:

- delivered at the 72nd session of the World Health Assembly (May 2019);

- prepared for the UN High-level Meeting on Noncommunicable Diseases (September 2018);

- and the connected statement submitted to the UN Civil Interactive Meeting  (July 2018). 

 IUHPE position statement NCDS

This document was written by the IUHPE Global Working Group on Health Literacy. A summary is available in English and Spanish

Le document et le résumé sont disponibles en français.

Read this document together with the special issue on Health Literacy published in December 2018 in Global Health Promotion. It includes a wider discussion on Health Literacy and Health Promotion.


This document was written by the IUHPE Global Working Group on Health Impact Assessment

Le document est disponible en français.

A summary is available in EnglishFrench and Spanish.

Read also: The special issue on Health Impact Assessment published in June 2017 in Global Health Promotion.

Health Impact Assessment (HIA): a tool for public decision-making towards healthy, sustainable and equitable choices. IUHPE guiding principles and recommendations for the implementation of HIA at the local level. The document is available in English and French.


Previous IUHPE positions:



The IUHPE continues to have a seat and a say in high level meetings and partnerships geared towards policy-making and best practices exchange and implementation in health promotion. We have been actively involved in/ recently contributed to: 






Please find below the last activity reports, presenting the works, projects and functioning of the IUHPE:





This Strategic Plan (2021-2026), which was developed in consultation with the IUHPE Executive Board and members, builds on existing developments and outlines the strategic priorities of the organization over the next five years.

The central theme and overarching framework that informs this Strategic Plan is a systems approach to health promotion. The Strategic Plan places the strengthening of health promotion systems at the centre of our priority actions. This is informed by the key requirements and enablers for strengthening health promotion systems, as outlined in a Position Statement published by the International Union for Health Promotion and Education in 20181. These system requirements inform and underpin this Strategy, as they are critical to effective action.

The Strategic Priorities identified for 2021-2026 include:
• Action on the determinants of health and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
• Addressing global challenges to health and health equity, including noncommunicable and communicable disease and promoting mental health and wellbeing
• The development of the health promotion field

These strategic priorities are supported by Operational Measures, which align with the portfolios of IUHPE Vice Presidents. These measures are advocacy, partnerships, leadership, capacity development, knowledge development and translation, communication, membership development and effective governance.