The EU COST funded project Network for Evaluation of One Health (NEOH) provided its third training school on “Evaluation of One Health” with the aim to give participants an introduction to evaluation in general and One Health evaluation in particular using the framework developed in the NEOH. There was also a strong focus on the evaluation of disease surveillance, while the specifical target were trainees from inclusiveness countries.

The training school took place from the 13-15th of September 2017 in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina and was hosted by the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Sarajevo.

On the first day, participants were warmly welcomed by the local organizers, Prof. Semra Cavaljuga (Faculty of Medicine) and Dr Sabina Seric-Haracic (Veterinary Faculty). Following this, the vice-rector of the University of Sarajevo Prof. Aleksandra Nikolic (Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences Sarajevo) presented the basic definitions and concepts of evaluation, gave insights into evaluation approaches and evaluation types and stimulated animated discussions about complex systems and unintended consequences. Dr Barbara Haesler, Royal Veterinary College (London, UK), explored with participants the key elements of Theories of Change and how to frame evaluation questions. Afterwards, trainees had time to work on a problem or program of their choice (case studies) and apply the theories covered to theirs own context.

On the second day, Dr Sabina Seric-Haracic presented an overview of the work conducted in the NEOH. This gave a useful starting point for Dr Simon Ruegg, University of Zurich, who introduced basics on systems theory and presented the practical NEOH tools to understand and map such systems within the framework elaborated. Trainees were encouraged to describe the systems in which their case studies were set, which stimulated intense and lively discussions and highlighted the intricate complex trade-offs and perspectives within One Health challenges (i.e. reduction in vaccination coverage in Bosnia and Herzegovina including Influenza, high number of street dogs in Macedonia, trichinellosis from pork and wild boar consumption in Greece).

The third day was dedicated to the evaluation of surveillance. Dr Marisa Peyre from CIRAD (France) and Dr Barbara Haesler gave an introduction to evaluation of surveillance in general and economics of surveillance in particular before presenting publicly available surveillance design and evaluation tools that trainees could access and use to apply their newly gained evaluation knowledge. Dr John Berezowski from the Veterinary Public Health Institute in Bern (Switzerland) explained the concept of One Health surveillance and gave an overview of the vision, mission and activities of the International Society for Infectious Disease Surveillance.

The training school was rounded off by participants presenting the outcomes of their case study discussions.

More about the NEOH and this event you can find on: