About WHO Centre for Health Development


“Innovations for sustainable universal health coverage”


To research and foster innovative solutions and translate them into policies and actions to achieve sustainable universal health coverage, in particular for ageing populations.

The World Health Organization (WHO) Centre for Health Development, also referred to as the “WHO Kobe Centre”, was established in Kobe, Japan in 1995 by the WHO Executive Board to be a global centre conducting research on the consequences of social, economic, and environmental change and its implications for health policies. The Centre is fully part of WHO’s Headquarters in Geneva.

The Centre further supports technical cooperation, capacity building and the exchange of information on evidence and best practices. While fulfilling its global mandate, it also responds to local interests and needs, utilizing international knowledge and experience where appropriate, as well as drawing on local and national expertise for global application.

WKC Strategy 2016 - 2026

The ten year strategy outlining the Centre's major research themes and ways of working.

History and timeline

A backgrounder on the origins and development of the Centre, together with a chronology.

Advisory Committee

WKC is governed by the Advisory Committee which meets every year in November.

Director Sarah Louise Barber

Dr Sarah Louise Barber from the United States of America appointed as Director of WHO Kobe Centre in May 2017.

Contact us

World Health Organization Centre for Health Development
1-5-1 Wakinohama-Kaigandori
Chuo-ku, Kobe 651-0073
Telephone: (+81) 78-230-3100
Fax: (+81) 78-230-3178
Email: wkc@who.int