Take Action as a School

Universities can achieve the highest possible score on the University Global Health Impact Report Card by taking the following steps.


  • Work to increase proportion of medical research resources devoted to neglected diseases, with a goal of reaching a percentage equivalent to the global burden of these diseases (estimated at 10-15% of total disease burden based on disability-adjusted life-years – see p.2 of “Medical Innovation for Neglected Patients“). Securing increased grant funding is important but not the only way to achieve this; universities can also recruit more faculty and students who specialize in these diseases, ensure they receive adequate training and support, and advocate to funders for increased overall investment in this area.
  • Invest in projects that build the university’s neglected disease research capacity, such as new research facilities or training programs focused specifically on these diseases.
  • Establish a major center or initiative dedicated to researching neglected diseases and neglected global health needs.


  • Adopt a public commitment to socially responsible or “global access” licensing for university medical innovations. The strongest commitments are detailed, specific, and prioritize licenses that enable affordable generic versions of new treatments in developing countries. Examples include the Global Access Licensing Framework, the Statement of Principles for the Equitable Dissemination of Medical Technologies, and the University of California Licensing Guidelines (pages 21-23).
  • Provide information about socially responsible licensing commitments and practices on the website of the university’s technology transfer office.
  • Prioritize open, non-exclusive licensing of university technologies to promote competitive development and affordable end products.
  • Refrain from seeking patents — or “file and abandon” patents — on university technologies in low- and middle-income countries, allowing generic drug makers there to produce low-cost versions of medicines developed from the university’s research.
  • Include global access provisions in 100% of exclusive licenses for university technologies. A list of sample provisions can be found in the Global Health Toolkit produced by the Association of University Technology Managers.
  • Share best practices and know-how through events, publications, trainings and interactions.


  • Offer dedicated global health centers, programs, majors and/or study tracks in medical, law and public health schools.
  • Developing innovative and effective global health initiatives supported by grants from global health funding sources such as the NIH’s Fogarty International Center.
  • Provide courses on the role of university patenting, licensing and technology transfer in global health, and how these policies impact global pricing and accessibility of medical innovations.
  • Provide courses that specifically educate students about the burden of neglected diseases and the need for increased research.
  • Host or sponsor conferences, symposia and other campus events that focus specifically on neglected disease research, licensing for global health, and the global health impact of universities.