Log in
Australian Institute of International Affairs - National Office

One Region, One Health: Limiting threats to food and health security

Thu, 17 Sep 2020
18:00 - 19:15

The Hon John Anderson AO FTSE , Chair, Crawford Fund, Former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia.

Dr Stephanie Williams,  Australia’s Ambassador for Regional Health Security.

Dr Anna Okello, Research Programme Manager of Livestock Systems, Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research.

Moderated by AIIA National Executive Director Bryce Wakefield

Approximately 75 percent of newly emerging infectious diseases are those that can transmit between animals and humans. COVID-19 is a wakeup call to further increase efforts to break down the silos of agriculture, health and the environment to better focus on the overlap, particularly where we risk future pandemics.


As we emerge from the coronavirus, many countries will need and welcome Australian scientific and policy support in health, biosecurity and agriculture, and especially the interactions between them.


We have seen the impact of COVID-19, SARS, MERS, Ebola and some influenzas which can be linked to close contact between humans and animals, often along food chains. However, Australia and our region is also open to the impact of biosecurity disasters from Fall Army Worm, Panama Disease, fire ants and African Swine Fever.


Our panel will consider the strong links between human and animal health; the importance of addressing the significant economic, social, scientific and ethical issues this interconnect brings for our decision makers and scientists; the need for co-ordinated international action and Australian leadership on regional food and health security, and the potential of a ‘One Health’ approach for improving policy and programming for both health and food security into the future.


Our speakers are:


The Hon John Anderson AO FTSE is Chair of the Crawford Fund, an Australian registered charity which  highlights benefits to Australia and developing countries of research for agriculture and development; supports Australians in training developing country scientists and farmers, and young Australians in their careers, studies and volunteering for food and nutrition security. John is the former Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the National Party of Australia; Minister for Primary Industries and Energy; Minister for Transport and Regional Development; served on Expenditure Review (Budget) Committee, National Security Committee and Standing Environment Committee while in Cabinet.


Dr Stephanie Williams was appointed as Australia’s Ambassador for Regional Health Security in March 2020. As Ambassador, she supports the advancement of Australia’s interests in the Indo-Pacific by fostering linkages between Australia’s world-class public health and medical research experts and partners in the region. In addition, she guides the implementation of the $300 million Health Security Initiative for the Indo-Pacific region. Stephen is a Public Health Physician and Epidemiologist, who has been DFAT’s Principal Health Specialist since 2017. Prior to joining DFAT, she was a Medical Adviser in the Office of Health Protection in the Australian Government Department of Health. Her previous roles include: Public Health Registrar for Victoria’s Chief Health Officer; Epidemiologist in Global Health Security for the World Health Organization (WHO); and a medical doctor for Medicines Sans Frontières and the WHO.  


Dr Anna Okello is the Research Programme Manager of Livestock Systems at the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, the Australian Government’s specialist agricultural research-for-development agency, within the Australian aid program. Anna is also a commissioner on the Lancet One Health Commission which considers how contemporary global health challenges are implicated within the complex interconnectedness of humans, animals, and our shared environment. A trained veterinarian, Anna completed a PhD in political science (global health policy) at the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for African Studies, and has worked for international NGOs, the Australian government, the World Health Organization and the University of Edinburgh. Anna holds an adjunct teaching position at the University of Edinburgh’s Global Health Academy.


This event is online only. After registering, on the day of the event you will receive a follow-up confirmation email containing further details on how to join the webinar. Registrations close at 5:40pm. (If you believe you have not received an email by 5pm please check your junk folder! A reminder will be sent at 5:45pm)

The event will start at 6pm AEST (Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne time, UTC+10).

All registrants may type questions via the moderated Q&A text feed.

To join your branch of the AIIA, click 

Ticket Type Price
AIIA Members $0.00 Sale Ended
Non-member attendee $0.00 Sale Ended

32 Thesiger Court, Deakin, Australian Capital Territory, 2600, Australia

Contact Us
Follow us: