To take stock of the current status of epidemiology throughout the world, the International Epidemiological Association commissioned a series of eight reviews that are being published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, starting in February 2011. Each review addresses one region of the world, and starts by describing the burden of disease and the current status of epidemiology, covering human resources, training, academic and research institutions, publication patterns, epidemiologic surveillance institutions, and epidemiologic societies. The reviewers then outline the main future challenges for the development of epidemiologic capacity in their regions. The session will include short presentations by the lead writers from the Western Pacific, Middle-East and North Africa, Latin American and Caribbean, North American, South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa regions, followed by a general discussion on the similarities and differences among regions.
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