The Global Immunization Meeting (GIM) took place 26-28 June 2018 in Kigali, Rwanda, and included 240 participants representing all key immunization stakeholders at global, regional and country levels. The GIM meeting has historically been held to review and discuss among global, regional and country immunization partners, key issues related to strengthening routine immunization, the implementation of new and under-utilized vaccines and accelerated disease control efforts – notably for measles, rubella and maternal and neonatal tetanus, and alignment with polio eradication efforts.  For 2018 we focused on post-2020 immunization priorities, with the theme of navigating transitions. 2018 meeting objectives were to:

  • Update global, regional, and country-level partners on key successes and challenges in immunization related to polio and Gavi transition;

  • Provide a forum for formal and informal exchange of new ideas and innovations, and

  • Identify partner and country visions to achieve immunization programme goals post-2020.

To support the meeting and ensure representation from a wide variety of stakeholders and perspectives, a partner planning committee was established with the overall objective to oversee the planning and organization of the GIM meeting, and in particular, to shape the formal agenda in a way that ensure that the GIM was interactive and relevant to meeting participants. The 2018 meeting featured interactive sessions on relevant topics using a mix of formats to keep the audience focused and engaged.

Meeting format

  • The 2018 GIM was a three-day meeting co-hosted by WHO Headquarters and UNICEF to be held 26-28 June in Kigali, Rwanda at the Kigali Convention Center, including 240 participants.
  • The GIM Planning Committee, with representation from WHO, UNICEF, BMGF, CDC, Gavi, IFRC, PATH, and each of the WHO regional offices, jointly developed the agenda based on consultation within their organizations and an independent scoring of the priority topics.
  • The meeting consisted of plenary sessions as a well as a keynote address that provided a broad view of the challenges of navigating transitions.
  • The morning plenaries were complemented by parallel workshop sessions occurring in the afternoons that will provide an opportunity to explore technical issues in detail.
  • A selection of short sessions allowed participants the opportunity to familiarize themselves with new content areas and to hear updates from their colleagues.
  • Finally, special sessions, including debates and “breakfast with an expert,” provided dynamic opportunities to consider and discuss diverse aspects of immunization.
  • In addition to the formal sessions, there was ample discussion time during coffee breaks, lunches, and receptions. There was a marketplace located centrally at the meeting venue at which colleagues shared their latest research or programmatic advances with meeting participants. 

Planning Committee

Helen Matzger, WHO HQ
Benjamin Schreiber, UNICEF
Ahmadu Yakubu, UNICEF
Adrien de Chaisemartin, Gavi
Zoey Diaz, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Eric Mast, CDC
Katy Clark, IFRC
Debbie Atherly, PATH
Ananda Amarasinghe, WPRO
Jayantha Liyanage, SEARO
Irtaza Chaudhri, EMRO
Balcha Masresha, AFRO
Martha Velandia, PAHO
Niyazi Cakmak, EURO