GBD Collaborator Network

About the GBD Collaborator Network

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington engages a large network of individual collaborators with specialties in various topic areas of expertise to conduct the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study (GBD) and its affiliated research projects. The GBD is a systematic, scientific effort to quantify the comparative magnitude of health loss due to diseases, injuries, and risk factors by age, sex, and geographies for specific points in time. It is the largest, most comprehensive effort to date to measure epidemiological levels and trends worldwide. This study allows decision-makers to compare the effects of different health conditions. The GBD has generated substantial scientific, policy, and even public interest across many different countries.


Who are GBD Collaborators?

Collaborators play a critical role in the GBD study. From data analysis to policy use, there are many ways for GBD Collaborators to contribute to the GBD and affiliated research projects. IHME serves as the coordinating center and engages Collaborators on topics according to their areas of expertise. Members of the Network are specialists in many areas related to population health with expertise falling into one or more of the following categories:

  • Demography (all-cause mortality, population, fertility, or migration)
  • Specific diseases, injuries, impairments, or risk factors
  • Epidemiology for a specific country and/or region
  • Health policy and practice
  • Other skills and expertise as necessary to achieve the aims of the GBD enterprise

To date, there are over 9,900 Collaborators in the Network, located in more than 162 countries. GBD Collaborators come from a variety of different work sectors and institutions, including research and scientific institutions, to healthcare delivery and policy – as well as multilateral organizations. GBD Collaborators include researchers, scientists, university professors, policymakers, government health officials, staff of non-governmental organizations and non-profit organizations, graduate students, and professionals implementing public health programs or interventions.

GBD Collaborator spotlights

Spotlight on: Dr. Elizabeth Wangia

Get an inside look at the people behind the research with the Collaborator Spotlight series! In Issue 01, Dr. Elizabeth Wangia takes us through a day in her life working as a monitoring and evaluations specialist in Nairobi, Kenya. She discusses her current projects outside of GBD, career advice, book recommendations, and more.

GBD Collaborator Elizabeth Wangia

Goals of the Network

  1. Improve the rigor of the data, methods, and results.
  2. Drive equity in science.
  3. Build trust and acceptance in the results.
  4. Inform health policy and improve lives.
  5. Build capacity for burden of disease analyses.

In several countries that IHME produces the subnational GBD estimates for, such as Ethiopia, Brazil, Italy, Pakistan, Poland, India, and Indonesia, the Collaborators have formed GBD country networks or initiatives to help strengthen capacity-building and amplify the relevance of subnational GBD estimates for policy planning and practice.



The GBD Collaborator Network continues to build and sustain an even larger and more diverse group of individuals from around the world. All individuals interested in applying to become a Collaborator must meet the following minimum requirements:  

  • Education in a relevant field (at least a bachelor's degree) or relevant work experience. (Please see the GBD Protocol for the list of relevant fields)
  • Applicant must work in a relevant sector (academic; local, national, or international governance; health care delivery; private or nonprofit sector) in one or more of the fields specified in the GBD Protocol.
  • Applicant must be in good professional standing with all relevant licensing bodies and professional boards.  
  • Conflicts of interest with the GBD enterprise must be individually disclosed. 


Time Commitment

The time commitment for GBD Collaborators is flexible, Collaborators are welcome to contribute to a range of GBD projects and activities but may decide their own time commitment. 

To learn more about GBD and affiliated research projects, and being a member of the Collaborator Network, please review the GBD Protocol.


Get started

First, each applicant must review the GBD Protocol. We highly recommend that you review the entire protocol before applying as it has essential information about the GBD study and the Collaborator Network.

Once you have reviewed the protocol, and you are ready to apply, the next steps are:

  1. Apply: this is a brief questionnaire that will supply some general information about you, such as your contact information and institution affiliation. We will review this application to ensure you meet the minimum requirements as outlined above.
  2. Enroll: If you meet the minimum requirements, we will invite you to enroll and share your areas of expertise and interests so that we may facilitate your participation as Collaborator. If for some reason you do not meet the requirements, we will contact you with further information and next steps.

Applications are reviewed on an ongoing basis and may take up to 4 weeks or more to review, depending on the volume of applications.

Apply today


Contact us

For questions about the GBD Collaborator Network, please contact the GBD Secretariat at [email protected].