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Towards the next generation of public health research in India: a call for a health equity lens
  1. K S Mohindra1,
  2. Subrata Mukherjee2,
  3. Shamshad Khan3,4,
  4. C U Thresia5
  1. 1Globalization/Health Equity, Institute of Population Health, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  2. 2Institute of Development Studies, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
  3. 3Centre for Global Public Health, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  4. 4Faculty of Health Sciences, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada
  5. 5Achutha Menon Centre for Health Science Studies, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Trivandrum, Kerala, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr K S Mohindra, Globalization/Health Equity, Institute of Population Health, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada; katia.mohindra{at}


Background Public health research is at a cross road in India. Despite a high level of health needs and new public health challenges arising in the context of rapid economic growth and social change, public health research is not keeping up with the needs of Indian society. There are, however, new initiatives creating opportunities to increase public health research, thereby raising debates about public health research priorities.

Objective In this paper, the authors offer their own view on an agenda for the next generation of public health research in India.

Findings The authors first outline the main reasons why they believe that public health research has been sidelined in India. Then, the authors argue that health equity should be the overarching principle guiding a public health research agenda. The authors suggest how to integrate equity-oriented strategies into the public health research agenda and propose some key research questions that require urgent attention from their respective disciplines.

  • Public health
  • health equity
  • India
  • international health
  • gender
  • inequalities
  • health promotion
  • HIV
  • qualitative ME

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.