The Collaborative Program and CIHR Strategic Training Program in

Public Health Policy


Aziza Virani
Program Administrator
155 College Street, Ste 534
Toronto ON M5T 3M7

P. 416.978.6512


Many recent public health scares (SARS, the tainted blood scandal, listeria outbreak) and on-going threats to the public’s health (tobacco use, obesity, physical inactivity) highlight the need for effective public health policy and the central role of public policy in building public health capacity and improving population health.

What is Public Health Policy?

Public health policy, the backbone of public health, is policy related to public health issues. Substantively, public health policy addresses a broad range of issues, including but not limited to:  policies for infectious and chronic disease prevention and control, food security and food policy, climate change adaptation, environmental health policy, physical activity policy, substance abuse and harm reduction policy, gambling policy, and occupational health policy. Public health policy includes a wide array of legislative and regulatory interventions, administrative practices, financing and funding decisions, and various forms of soft law operating at all levels of government, affecting multiple settings, jurisdictions and sectors of activity.

Public health policy is different than health policy, which focuses on issues of health services and health care delivery.

Why offer a Training Program in Public Health Policy?

In Canada, the need for professionals trained specifically in public health policy has been identified as a top priority by government agencies at all levels. The CIHR Strategic Training Program in Public Health Policy fills this niche, providing an exciting opportunity to become intellectually and actively involved in the complex tasks demanded by public health policymaking including: policy change; policy analysis; policy assessment; and policy structures and planning. This training program promotes an active, productive and collaborative multidisciplinary community of researchers, trainees, policymakers, educators and practitioners that works and learns together to address – from a policy perspective – the key issues compromising the public’s health at local, regional, national and global levels.

Please see How to Apply for application guidelines, dates and forms.

The CIHR Strategic Training Program in Public Health Policy is part of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)'s Strategic Training Initiative in Health Research (STIHR). Funding for this program is provided by the CIHR Institutes of Population and Public Health; Health Services and Policy Research; and Child and Youth Health.


Save the Dates! Future Public Health Policy Rounds

  • March 27, 2015
  • April 17, 2015

Room location can be found on the Events page

Links to Public Health Policy Rounds Podcasts

February 13th, 2015
The Healthcare/Public Health Nexus
Ross Upshur, MD, MSc, Dalla Lana Faculty of Public Health

January 23rd, 2015
The Implications of Limits to Growth for Health Equity Agenda
Blake Poland, PhD, Dalla Lana School of Public Health

October 24th, 2014
Pedal Power = Health, Environmental and Economic Improvement - Using mapping, demography and social psychology to increase cycling and sustainability   
Beth Savan, PhD, School of the Environment

September 19th, 2014
Environmental Standards and Human Health: What’s Risk Got To Do With It?
Ray Copes, MD, MSc, Public Health Ontaro

Archived Podcasts of Public Health Policy Rounds