10th Symposium on Public Health

Networks in Public Health: at the Crossing of Practice and Research

Mons, Initialis - 11th December 2009



Living conditions and health situations become more and more complex. The technological evolution offers great opportunities, but the implementation of those technologies is far from evident. There is an increasing need for a multidisciplinary and multisectorial approach in public health, but financial resources to achieve this are often limited.

Collaborations in public health may have different purposes: solving common problems, sharing resources, bridging the gap between preventive and curative approaches, making a link between research and fieldwork. Collaborations may be organised between geographical units (local, regional, national, international), around a common theme, between health professionals, at the level of different institutions, etc.

Partnerships may also involve different dimensions, ranging from a loose, informal network to a well organised professional network.

The objectives of a network may vary: exchange of information, opinion building, rationalisation of resources, attaining common objectives next to specific objectives for each partner. The concept of “a network” itself, – and more specifically “a network in public health”, is complex and involves different aspects. It covers networks of practices, but also the practice of networking, research networks but also research on networks,… During this symposium we would like to progress in the definition of “a network in public health”, but also identify the added value, constraints, factors that lead to success or failure when trying to build a network.


Explore the concept of a network in public health in all its dimensions

Provide a forum where health professionals from the field and researchers can meet

Bridging the gap between curative and preventive medicine

Present different networks of public health through a stand on the symposium


During the symposium various themes in relation to networks in public health will be discussed. Researchers will also get the opportunity to make presentations for a professional audience on other themes.

Themes to be covered:

1. Themes related to the process of networking

2. Thematic networks, e.g.

3. Free scientific communications (free podium)