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Former Norwegian Prime Minister Brundtland on Pandemic Leadership

Gro Brundtland, Former Prime Minister of Norway and Former Director-General of the WHO, discussed the similarities between the COVID-19 and SARS pandemics and the lessons learned.
Gro Brundtland
Catherine Bertini
Event Date

About This Event

Between 2002 and 2004, the World Health Organization (WHO) faced the first pandemic of the globalized 21st century, SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome). Under the leadership of Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland and through epidemiological, clinical, and logistical coordination, the WHO facilitated a strong and ultimately successful response to the outbreak. Today, the WHO is facing the coronavirus pandemic in an even more globalized and urbanized world, further complicating response and coordination efforts. What similarities do these two pandemics share, and what lessons in leadership might we be able to learn from the past?

About the Speakers
Gro Brundtland
Former Prime Minister of Norway; Former Director-General, World Health Organization
Former Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) and Prime Minister of Norway—the first woman and youngest person to serve in that role, Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland has provided leadership on global issues for over four decades. She has served as one of three UN Special Envoys for Climate Change, having been named to that position in May of 2007 by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
Distinguished Fellow, Global Food and Agriculture
Council expert Catherine Bertini
Catherine Bertini served as executive director of the UN World Food Program, the world’s largest international humanitarian agency, from 1992 to 2002 prior to joining the Council. She was named the World Food Prize laureate in 2003 for her groundbreaking leadership there.
Council expert Catherine Bertini