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UNESCO backs plans for centres for excellence in pharmacy education across the world regions

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The Hague • 15 June 2023

Plans to develop FIP-UNESCO UNITWIN centres for excellence for pharmacy education across the world have been bolstered by a renewed agreement between the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) concerning the UNITWIN Network on Global Pharmacy Education Development, the federation announced today.

In 2010, FIP and UNESCO launched the network, together with University College London (UCL) School of Pharmacy. This was the first in the field of higher education for any health profession and led to the development of the FIP-UNESCO UNITWIN Centre for Excellence in Africa. In 2021, building on a decade of progress in sub-Saharan Africa, FIP launched a FIP UNITWIN pathfinder toolkit to support the global expansion of the UNITWIN programme and provide step-wise guidance to academic institutions to establish UNITWIN cooperation networks in regions across the world. “We are extremely proud that this partnership has been renewed. It supports us in continuing our valuable work to help pharmaceutical education institutions deliver a pharmaceutical workforce able to meet needs,” said FIP president Mr Dominique Jordan.

“As we continue to progress our transnational and translational work with workforce development, professional education and equity, this renewed agreement could not come at a more critical time. Our contributions to global healthcare challenges must be mediated through science and innovation in professional education. Having the support of UNESCO and the ability to build networks across regions is a major step in enhancing our contributions,” said Prof. Ian Bates, director, FIP-UCL Collaborating Centre.

“In 2021, FIP worked with its Academic Institutional Membership, professional organisations and key stakeholders to identify priorities and co-create regional roadmaps to advance pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences education. Throughout 2022, FIP has worked with its regional stakeholders and members to progress the regional roadmaps and deliver the actions agreed, in preparation for the establishment of further regional centres for excellence. According to our priority assessment of the roadmaps, we plan to establish our next regional centres for excellence in the South-East Asian region,” Mr Jordan added. The federation plans to have centres of excellence in each world region by 2024. The centres will lead educational and scientific transformations, and promote global collaboration to address sustainability, inequities and technology in pharmaceutical education.

Notes for editors

About the UNITWIN Network on Global Pharmacy Education Development UNESCO launched the University Twinning and Networking (UNITWIN) programme in 1992. Its main goal is to advance research, training and development of academic programmes through building university networks and encouraging inter-university cooperation through the transfer of knowledge across borders. The UNITWIN programme contributes to the strengthening of higher education institutions, bridging knowledge gaps, mobilising university expertise and working towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Agenda 2030.


The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) is the global federation of national associations of pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists, and is in official relations with the World Health Organization. Through our 152 member organisations, we represent over four million practitioners and scientists around the world. Our vision is a world where everyone benefits from access to safe, effective, quality and affordable medicines and pharmaceutical care.


Lin-Nam Wang, head of communications & advocacy

International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP)


Tel +31 70 302 1987

Last update 5 July 2018

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