Summer Program on Global Health Law and Governance: Non-Communicable Diseases and the Law

June 17-21, 2013
Georgetown University Law Center
Washington, DC

As global efforts to address non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are accelerating, complexity is increasing and the importance of law is becoming more apparent. Understanding the powers, duties and constraints created by law is now essential not only for lawyers, but also for officials and advocates working on NCDs.

The O’Neill Institute Summer Program on NCDs and the Law will take a global approach to the issues, while also drawing upon case studies from domestic law. Participants will enhance their understanding of the global burden of NCDs, contemporary developments at the international level, international instruments governing NCDs, best practice regulation, the intersection of human rights and NCDs and the intersection of trade, investment and NCDs.


Monday, June 17: Introduction to Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs)
Day 1 will provide an introduction to global health law and an overview of the NCD burden.

Tuesday, June 18: Comparative Regulatory Approaches
Day 2 will explore a number of regulatory approaches used to address NCDs, including packaging and labeling measures; restrictions on marketing, advertising and sponsorship; and taxation measures.

Wednesday, June 19: Human Rights and NCDs
Day 3 will examine the relevance of human rights law to NCDs. Economic, social and cultural rights provide an important justification for government intervention to address NCDs. Civil and political rights associated with individual liberty may also restrain government intervention.

Thursday, June 20: Trade, Investment and NCDs
Day 4 will examine the restraints that international trade and investment agreements impose on domestic regulation in the context of NCDs. These restraints have been highlighted by recent disputes, such as legal challenges to plain packaging of tobacco products at the World Trade Organization and under a bilateral investment treaty.

Friday, June 21: NCDs and the Law: Where to from Here?
The final day of the summer program will focus primarily on the normative question of what role law should play in efforts to address NCDs. The role of self-regulation and public-private partnerships will also be examined.

For more information about the O’Neill Institute Summer Program on Global Health Law and Governance: NCDs and the Law, please email

Application site is now OPEN
To apply, please visit:
and select the “Apply” tab

Petrie-Flom Center to Work with NFL Players Association

The Petrie-Flom Center at Harvard Law School is pleased to announce our involvement with the new “Harvard Integrated Program to Protect and Improve the Health of NFLPA Members.”  The Program will be created through a $100 million grant to Harvard Medical School from the National Football League Players Association in order to launch a transformative 10-year initiative.  The Petrie-Flom Center will work to address the critical ethical, legal, and policy issues relevant to the health of current, future, and retired players.

Read more from Harvard Law School:

Petrie-Flom Center will participate with HMS and University partners in 10-year project with NFL Players Association

[HLS Assistant Professor of Law I. Glenn Cohen, faculty co-director of the Center and] one of this year’s Fellows of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, will be a co-investigator on the 10-year project along with Holly Fernandez Lynch, the Center’s executive director.

The project, which will be known as the Harvard Integrated Program to Protect and Improve the Health of NFLPA Members, was announced on Jan. 28 by Harvard Medical School and the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA).

“Holly and I will be assuming leadership over one of the six aims of the project, the one that will address the ethical, legal and policy issues relevant to the health and health care of current future, and retired players,” said Cohen. “We will begin the 10-year project by conducting ‘listening tours’ in collaboration with the NFLPA, where we will get current and retired NFL players and their families to help us shape the agenda for our legal and ethical analysis. We will also be involving our students and colleagues at HLS and across the university in trying to wrestle with some of the thorniest legal and ethical issues involved, including: the appropriate role of players and teams in the management and employment and accreditation of team doctors and other medical staff, the privacy of players’ medical information and the ethical development of testing for injury, and liability and compensation for injured players. I feel privileged that the players will be entrusting us and the rest of the team with this vital responsibility.”

Cohen and Lynch will also serve as ethics consultants for the entire project, to help ensure that the clinical research is performed according to the appropriate ethical standards.

Said Harvard Law School Dean Martha Minow: “I am delighted and proud that the Petrie-Flom Center will be working with Harvard Medical School and others across the University on this extraordinary and much-needed project, and I am confident that together they will do something important for football, its players, and the country.”

For more information, see these selected news articles announcing the partnership: