WG on Competencies and Workforce Development (CWDG)

The International Union for Health Promotion and Education's key strategic objectives include:

  • achieving high levels of capacity in individuals, organisations and countries to undertake health promotion activities and

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


Based on these objectives, the Comptencies and Workforce Development working group was established to build on, follow up, complete and extend the positive outcomes of the CompHP Project - Developing Competencies and Professional Standards for Health Promotion Capacity Building in Europe, funded by the European Commission (EAHC, http://www.ec.europa.eu/eahc - project number 20081209).


The IUHPE has been an active partner in the project and has been recognized as the most relevant organisation to take forward the work of the CompHP Project, in particular in relation to accreditation.


In addition to the CompHP Project, the basis for this Working Group lies in the Galway Consensus Conference (2008), which promoted dialogue and established an exchange of understanding among international partners regarding domains of core competency, standards and quality assurance mechanisms in the professional preparation and practice of health promotion specialists.


The Galway Consensus Conference, organized by the IUHPE in collaboration with the National University of Ireland Galway, Ireland, the Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE), United-States, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and a range of other partners, provided a forum for discussion to identify the practices necessary to build capacity for health promotion, as well as systems that can assure quality in practice, education, and training.



The IUHPE's Competencies and Workforce Development Working Group aims to improve the competency and effectiveness of health promotion practitioners, recognizing that a competent workforce, with the necessary knowledge, skills and abilities for translating policy, theory and research into effective action, is critical to the growth and development of global health promotion.



  • Facilitate dialogue and coordination between practitioners, policymakers and education providers to improve the competency and effectiveness of the health promotion workforce;

  • Identify and implement relevant capacity building activities for health promotion professionals;

  • Advocate for, and actively contribute to, the implementation of agreed competency-based standards for health promotion practice, to improve quality assurance and continuous professional development and to facilitate international mobility of health promotion professionals;

  • Support the implementation of the findings of the CompHP Project at the European level, and ultimately at a global level, with regards to the core competencies, professional standards and accreditation mechanisms for health promotion practice, education and training.


2013 Work plan

  • Implement and establish the CompHP Accreditation Framework at the European level with the IUHPE as the Accreditation Organisation, as described in the CompHP Accreditation framework;

  • Identify and contribute to the development of appropriate tools to facilitate the operational functioning of the Working Group, such as an online document sharing system, in coordination with the IUHPE Vice President for Communications and Headquarters staff members;

  • Develop online tools for capacity building of health promotion Practitioners, in coordination with the IUHPE Vice Presidents for Scientific Affairs and Capacity Building Education and Training, the other IUHPE GWGs and Headquarters officers;

  • Contribute to the development of curricula and modules of health promotion in different settings and for different target audiences (mixed teams of practitioners within and outside the health sector, policy-makers and programme managers, etc.);

  • Contribute to the development of the scientific programme of the IUHPE World Conference on Health Promotion.


2014 Work plan

    • Manage, coordinate and expand the systems and processes of the IUHPE European Health Promotion Accreditation Framework

    • Manage and coordinate effective dissemination of information, public relations and marketing of the Framework

    • Consolidate the IUHPE European Accreditation Framework within the capacity development agenda for health improvement at European, national and global levels

    • Work in partnership with national and European stakeholders to advocate for and support the development of accreditation as a means of assuring quality in Health Promotion in Europe

See the 2014 Work plan in greater detail



The CWDG received funding from the European Union, in the framework of the Health Programme.


EU Health Programme Flag


IUHPE Headquarters Support

The IUHPE headquarters provides the Working Group's Secretariat, as well as support in the development of core activities, a dedicated webpage and other communication tools.


The IUHPE Headquarters also facilitates the exchange with other Working Groups, and their participation in the IUHPE specific research-collaborative programs.



Professor Margaret Barry
National University of Ireland Galway, Ireland


Professor Paolo Contu
Università degli Studi di Cagliari, Italy


Coordinators of operations:

  • Working Group coordinator: Lianne Wilson, IUHPE

  • Operating grant consultant: Barbara Battel-Kirk







Other IUHPE Officers involved in the Working Group

  • Shu-Ti Chiou

    Vice President for Partnerships, Taiwan

  • Ronice Maria Franco De Sa

    IUHPE Elected Officer, Brazil

  • Fu Hua

    IUHPE Elected Officer, People's Republic of China

  • Marko Akerman

    Regional Vice President of Latin America-ORLA, Brazil

  • William Potts-Dema

    Regional VIce President of North America, USA

  • Takashi Eto

    Regional Vice President of the Northern Part of the Western Pacific-NPWP, Japan

  • Sione Tu'itahi

    Regional VIce President of South West Pacific-SWP, New Zealand


Members' roles and responsibilities

Members are responsible for:

  • Contributing and/or taking leadership with respect to the development of specific activities detailed in the work plan;

  • Participating in email exchanges, teleconferences and face-to-face meetings when possible to advance the work of the group;

  • Signaling opportunities for pursuing additional resources to support the work plan of the Working Group;

  • Ensuring efforts to connect with other relevant groups or organisations from their networks with which the Working Group should be linking to for greater impact and reach.


Co-Chairs' roles and responsibilities

The Co-Chairs of the Working Group are responsible for:

  • Coordinating the overall development and implementation of the Working Group work plan;

  • Participating in the development of the scientific programme of the IUHPE World Conference;

  • Liaising with other Working Group Chairs to ensure synergies and mutual support ;

  • Reporting to the IUHPE Vice President for Scientific Affairs on a regular basis and formally bi annually (IUHPE Executive Committee);

  • Ensuring that appropriate evaluation mechanisms are in place.


Communication and dissemination


The members of the group keep regular contact through email, teleconferences and yearly meetings. When construction is finished, the Working Group members will also communicate through a dedicated space on the IUHPE online platform.


External dissemination is done through:

  • A dedicated page on IUHPE web site;

  • A Working Group newsletter (if appropriate funding is secured);

  • IUHPE World and Regional Conferences;

  • Participation in other events and conferences where relevant;

  • Publication of articles on specific activities in the IUHPE family of Journals and other relevant supports;

  • Any other appropriate means according to the specific activities implemented.