WG on Surveillance (WARFS)

WARFS was established at IUHPE in 2008. Since then much effort has been dedicated to writing a “White Paper”, as a tool to open discussion on the fundamental aspects and role of surveillance, and then to offer the result of this effort to all IUHPE members and other stakeholders. The revised White Paper was the object of a final discussion at the 7th international conference on surveillance (the first held under WARFS). In the same conference, a decision was taken to remain an IUHPE GWG, with the same mission and aims stated in the 2008 TOR and Action Plan.


For this reason, the present Action Plan reiterates the aims and objectives stated in the previous AP, projecting them into the future.




To support the development of behavioural risk factor surveillance (BRFS) as a tool for evidence-based public health,
acknowledging the importance of this information source to inform, monitor and evaluate disease prevention and health promotion policies, services and interventions.

The aims of WARFS are:

  • To integrate surveillance as a tool into the mainstream of health promotion;
  • To serve as a reference for researchers, RFS practitioners, and countries that are developing RFS; and
  • To share findings and results and experiences with IUHPE community to facilitate a dialogue regarding the role of RFS.


Work plan 2014-2015


  • To continue the establishment of a formal WARFS network and working group liaison with IUHPE in order to integrate surveillance as a tool into the mainstream of health promotion work.
  • To disseminate the White Paper so that the framework, objectives, guidelines and standards for risk factor surveillance are shared globally.
  • To serve as a reference for researchers, BRF practitioners, and countries that are developing risk factor surveillance systems:
    - by serving as a clearing house for requests for technical assistance on risk factor surveillance.
  • To provide forums for discussion, debate and shared learning:
    - by assisting with organization of the 2015 International WARFS conference
    - by establishing the International Scientific Committee for the 2015 conference.
  • To encourage communication, debate, collaboration about WARFS activities:
    - by use of the WARFS web site (
    - by use of the WARFS blog site (found at
  • To identify priority areas for future development in risk factor surveillance.
  • To encourage and facilitate the publication of papers, chapters and books that contributes to risk factor surveillance.
  • Stefano Campostrini (University of Venice), GWG Chair

  • David McQueen (USA), Co-Chair

  • Anne Taylor, PROS, South Australia

  • Lina Balluz, CDC, USA

  • Isabella Danel, CDC, USA

  • Bernard Choi, Canada

  • Ligia de Salazar, Colombia

  • Thomas Abel, Switzerland

  • Juan Zevallos, USA

  • Vivian Lin, Australia (IUHPE VP SA)

  • Alison Daly, Australia

  • Chee Yeong CHNG, Singapore

  • Liang Xiaofeng, China

  • Deborah Carvalho Malta, Brazil


Joint 9th World Alliance for Risk Factor Surveillance (WARFS) Global Conference and 12th Americas' Network for Chronic Disease Surveillance (AMNET) Conference 2015, St. John's, Antigua, November 17th-20th 2015. For more information, please visit the following link: http://www.warfs15.com/. 


Highlights of the World Alliance for Risk Factor Surveillance (WARFS) 2013 Global Conference, October 29-November 1, 2013, Beijing, China (http://www.ciccst.org.cn/warfs2013/)

The World Alliance for Risk Factor Surveillance (WARFS) 2013 Global Conference was held from October 29 to November 1, 2013 in Beijing, China. WARFS is the Global Working Group on surveillance of the International Union for Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE). The 2013 Global Conference was co-hosted by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CCDC) and the Chinese Preventive Medicine Association (CPMA). With more than 200 participants from 16 countries, the WARFS Beijing Conference was one of the most attended WARFS conferences since inception in 1999 in Atlanta, USA. The theme of the 2013 global conference was the past, present and future of risk factor surveillance.


Day 1 of the 3-day conference focused on learning from the past. It started with welcome addresses from IUHPE, WARFS, CCDC, CPMA, and the National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC) of China. This was followed by 4 keynote addresses from USA (global progress since the first global conference in 1999), Canada (lessons learned from the history of surveillance for the future), World Health Organization (WHO) (WHO global monitoring framework for noncommunicable diseases (NCDs)), and China (history, current state and future of NCD surveillance in China). There were also five plenary sessions discussing the difficulties for developing global risk factor surveillance, global challenges to NCD risk factor surveillance, meeting the WHO 25% reduction target of premature NCD mortality by 2025, country strategies in China, Singapore, Venezuela, Canada and USA to meet surveillance needs, and the IUHPE WARFS white paper on surveillance and health promotion.


Day 2 focused on reflecting on the present. This included present methodological challenges for surveillance, such as survey methodology, other challenges, surveillance evaluation, and surveillance information dissemination. A plenary session discussed surveillance use in China, Canada and Venezuela. Four parallel sessions (3 English and 1 Chinese) featured 44 oral presentations and 21 poster presentations from Antigua & Barbuda, Australia, Cambodia, Canada, China, Finland, Georgia, Hong Kong China, Italy, Kenya, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and Venezuela. 


Day 3 focused on planning for the future. Three plenary sessions discussed problems and solutions for the future,.ways to encourage future global collaborations, and future development of global risk factor surveillance.


The 2013 global conference has made significant contributions to global NCD risk factor surveillance on several fronts. It opens up the conceptual thinking of risk factor surveillance: in time, by going back to the past to learn lessons for the future; in space, by exchanging experiences from developed and developing countries; and in content, by blending theory and practice. Outcomes of debates and discussion at the conference have provided important leads to revise and finalise the IUHPE WARFS white paper. Comments from participants include: "I enjoyed every moment of the conference", "very informative, thought-provoking and inspiring presentations", "I thoroughly enjoyed the conference and felt very happy to be with like-minded people", "The conference was really exciting and the sessions were very useful".  The WARFS Global Conference is held every two years. The 2015 conference is scheduled to be held in Antigua & Barbuda.


World alliance for risk factor surveillance white paper on surveillance and health promotion written by Campostrini, Stefano, McQueen, David, Taylor, Anne, and Daly, Alison.

Published in AIMS Public Health.