■ WHAT IS EPIDEMIOLOGY
Epidemiology is the study of disease patterns in human and animal populations. Epidemiologists investigate outbreaks, conduct population health research and clinical trials, design and implement disease control measures, assess study design and methodologic issues, and evaluate programs and other community health interventions to improve public health. The knowledge gained from epidemiologic research advances scientific understanding of what causes or prevents disease and provides evidence for better-informed decisions about public health policy and practice. This work ─ at the interface of research and policy ─ is often called “translational science” or “consequential epidemiology.”
■ WHAT IS INEP
The Joint Policy Committee of the Societies of Epidemiology
(JPC-SE) was founded in 2006 as a not-for-profit voluntary consortium of national and international societies and associations of professional epidemiologists. By 2013, to reflect our global expansion, the name was changed to International Joint Policy Committee of the Societies of Epidemiology
(IJPC-SE). We have since grown to 23 organizations spanning six continents. In 2018, we adopted a simpler name: The International Network for Epidemiology in Policy
(INEP). Our goal remains to ensure health for all through ethical, independent and transparent science.
■ WHAT WE DO
The epidemiological analysis and interpretation of data can result in controversy. Reports based on poor science, or misleading reports from special interest groups, foment uncertainty that can confuse the public and policy-makers. This can lead to delayed or damaging policies that negatively impact people and the living systems on which they depend. The IJPC-SE works collaboratively and transparently to address health-related issues and minimize harm. We host forums and develop position statements with recommendations to protect and improve public health. Through our collective efforts, we bring to our member organizations the benefit of a unified professional voice in the public interest.
We promote health for all through ethical, independent and transparent science.
■ OUR CORE VALUES
Our core values anchor us in our collective motivation. We are committed to protect the public interest in a just and respectful way with sensitivity, humility and integrity through ethical, independent and transparent science. As professionals engaged with communities, we are united in the study of disease and health patterns. We promote the use of valid scientific evidence to make informed policy interventions that are designed to mitigate or eliminate potential harm.
■ OUR VISION
We strive to bring clarity to the science of epidemiology, paving the way to rational evidence-based policy. We work to promote and protect public health by serving as an ethical and effective counterweight to the misuse of epidemiology.
■ OUR MISSION
The IJPC-SE’s mandate is to promote the ethical and unbiased application of epidemiology. We use epidemiological evidence to inform rational policy development for government and other policy-making organizations. When special interests misuse or create scientific evidence to manufacture doubt, our goal is to provide independent evidence and bring clarity to correct what is scientifically flawed. The Committee works to minimize unjustified delays in the implementation of sound public health policy. We volunteer our expertise to protect the public and to promote health and well-being. The IJPC-SE encourages all national and international organizations of epidemiologists to become members.
(Academics and Public Interest Advocates appear grouped below in alphabetical order)
ENDORSEMENTS FROM ACADEMICS
Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, USA
Co-Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Environmental Health
Recipient of the prestigious Ramazzini Award (2015), and the John Goldsmith Award for Outstanding Contributions to Environmental Epidemiology (2016)
"Interpreting epidemiological findings is becoming increasingly complex. At the same time, the need for human health studies makes epidemiology essential for informing health policy. Particularly in situations where competing interests are at play, an impartial and thorough assessment of epidemiological evidence is crucial. This is why I support INEP."
Philip J. Landrigan
MD, MSc, FAAP
Dean, Global Health, Icahn School of Medicine, Mount Sinai, New York City, USA, a World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Centre in Children’s Environmental Health
President, Collegium Ramazzini, Bologna, Italy
Editor-in-Chief, Annals of Global Health
"I am honored to support the work of the International Joint Policy Committee of the Societies of Epidemiology (IJPC-SE). The IJPC-SE is a vital voice for honesty and transparency in scientific publishing. The Committee’s tireless efforts to require full and accurate disclosure of all conflicting interests is essential for preserving the integrity of scientific communication."
Professor, George Washington University School of Public Health.
Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health (2009‑2017)
Assistant Secretary of Energy for Environment, Safety and Health (1998‑2001)
Author, Doubt is Their Product. How Industry’s War on Science Threatens Your Health. New York
(Oxford University Press 2008).
"The IJPC-SE is an essential counterweight to the work of conflicted scientists who focus on delaying needed public health protections rather than on advancing our scientific understanding of the world. I commend the IJPC-SE on its vital mission and hope it is successful in promoting ethical practices and public health values in epidemiology."
Ph.D. (Philosophy), Ph.D. (Law)
Founder and Leader, Global Ecological Integrity Group
Professor Emerita (Philosophy)
University of Windsor Sessional Instructor, Faculty of Law
Visiting Professor, Faculty of Jurisprudence, University of Parma, Italy
"The IJPC-SE is needed for protecting ─ through its mission to provide unbiased evidence in support of health for all ─ both present and future generations on a sustainable planet. The Global Ecological Integrity Group (GEIG) relies for its inter- and trans-disciplinary work on, among other inputs, epidemiological findings that are valid. The IJPC-SE's public interest work must continue."
ENDORSEMENTS FROM PUBLIC INTEREST ADVOCATES
"The Council of Canadians relies on evidence for its advocacy positions. As National Chairperson of the Council since 1988, I have first-hand knowledge of how science can be manipulated to serve moneyed interests. I therefore endorse and support the IJPC-SE's mission because such an organization, with its transparency and integrity, is the professional group that serves as an effective counter-weight to moneyed influence in advancing public health."
David L. Lewis
Research Director, Focus for Health Foundation
Co-Director of the National Whistleblowers Center Leadership Council
Chair, Science Advisory Committee, Autism Policy Reform Coalition
Former U.S. EPA-ORD research microbiologist (1970-1974; 1976-2003), Recipient of EPA Science Achievement Award (2000) as lead author of study published in Nature
regarding effects of climate change on biodegradation pathways; Author of Science for Sale: How the US Government Uses Powerful Corporations and Leading Universities to Support Government Policies, Silence Top Scientists, Jeopardize our Health, and Protect Corporate Profits
(Skyhorse Publishing, 2014).
"I wholeheartedly support the IJPC-SE because it recognizes the importance of addressing Institutional Scientific Misconduct (ISM). ISM refers to the widespread practice of federal agencies in the U.S. selectively funding in-house and extramural research projects that support government policies, while suppressing research results with negative policy implications."
Officer of the Order of Canada
Member of Parliament for Saanich-Gulf Islands
Leader of the Green Party of Canada
"In a democracy, minority voices are often swamped by those with power, money or influence. It is the job of smaller parties that manage to be elected to government, especially in a multi-cultural society, to bring to the table balance and perspective in the struggle against corruption. The IJPC-SE applies these same principles. With its mission to protect the public interest, I fully endorse the IJPC-SE because we all benefit when policy decisions are rational and informed by scientific truth."
Margaret (Meg) Sears
B.A.Sc. (Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry),
M.Eng, Ph.D. (Biochemical Engineering)
Senior Research Associate, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, Ontario, Canada
Chair and Lead Scientist, Prevent Cancer Now
"Prevent Cancer Now
(PCN) wholeheartedly supports INEP as an independent, international expert arbiter of and advocate for high quality, transparent scientific evidence in epidemiology. In PCN's work to stop cancer before it starts, we see that, sadly, carcinogens identified in the laboratory are acted upon only after human harms are confirmed. INEP's role to present impartial evidence, and to expose obfuscation led by vested interests devoting themselves to delaying policy action for generations, is an invaluable public service. INEP has earned trust on the front lines of science in the public interest."
trained at London's Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA). He is an award-winning stage actor and, since the 2000s, even more so an award-winning screen actor. When not acting, Mr. Sheen serves the public good as an advocate for community well-being. His passion to put humanity on a sustainable and healthy path makes him a sought after speaker.
Indeed, his delivery of the 2017 Annual Raymond Williams Memorial Lecture
in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, is one such example. This Lecture was organised by the Learning & Work Institute Cymru in and sponsored by The Open University, Wales. In addition, Michael is Patron/Ambassador of numerous causes including UNICEF, Social Enterprise UK, Wales Council for Voluntary Action, Streetfootball Wales and the End Youth Homelessness Cymru coalition, and many others.
"Scientific evidence being manipulated or mis-used due to the influence of money or powerful interests is a danger to the public health and particularly to more vulnerable communities. I support the IJPC-SE in its aim to provide ethical, independent and transparent science as a counter-balance to these dangers."
"We all benefit when government decision-making is informed by the best available evidence. Evidence for Democracy (E4D) is the leading fact-driven, non-partisan, not-for-profit organization promoting the transparent use of evidence in government decision-making in Canada. E4D's mission aligns strongly with that of the IJPC-SE. Without an impartial voice that speaks to what underlies public health policy, the health of our citizens, and our democracy, suffers. E4D supports the mission of the IJPC-SE."