Global Laboratory Leadership Programme (GLLP)

The GLLP partners meet in January 2019 at OIE Headquarters in Paris. Photo: Alex Ginzberg

The GLLP partners meet in January 2019 at World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) Headquarters in Paris. Photo: Alex Ginzberg

Strong laboratory systems are critical and require a highly skilled workforce to rapidly identify and monitor outbreaks. The 2014 launch of the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) highlighted the importance of building global capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease outbreaks. Following GHSA’s creation, experts from the Division of Global Health Protection (DGHP) recognized the need for increased training for laboratory leaders to further develop strong and sustainable laboratory systems across the world. To fill this gap, CDC collaborated with the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL), the European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), and the World Health Organization (WHO) to develop the Global Laboratory Leadership Programme (GLLP). GLLP works to foster and mentor current and emerging leaders to build, strengthen, and sustain national laboratory systems. It is the first laboratory leadership program to emphasize a One Health approach.

GLLP Learning Package Now Available!

The GLLP Learning Package is designed to build laboratory capacity worldwide and enhance global health security. Content includes:

  • Guides for planning, implementation, and mentorship
  • Virtual and in-person course materials

More information is available at the bottom of this page and on the World Health Organization’s Global Laboratory Leadership Programme page.



Learn how Pakistan and Liberia have implemented the Learning Package.

CDC provides technical expertise and support, working with international partners to help fulfill GLLP’s vision of empowering national laboratory systems across the globe. To strengthen global health security, GLLP uses a One Health approach. “GLLP is unique in this field because of its comprehensive approach and country focus. Participants have already been applying new knowledge and skills in their work, including during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr. Yvan Huton, WHO Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office (EMRO).

How Do We Prepare Laboratory Leaders Globally?

To ensure laboratory leaders have the necessary skills to meet national, regional, and global disease detection and response objectives, DGHP experts worked with GLLP partners to develop the Laboratory Leadership Competency Framework. The framework outlines essential skills for emerging leaders and includes nine core competencies:

GLLP participants in Pakistan gain hands-on experience (January 2019). Photo: Amanda Balish, CDC

GLLP participants in Pakistan gain hands-on experience (January 2019). Photo: Amanda Balish, CDC

  • Laboratory System
  • Leadership
  • Management
  • Communication
  • Quality Management System
  • Biosafety and Biosecurity
  • Disease Surveillance and Outbreak Investigation
  • Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Recovery
  • Research

How Is the Program Delivered?

GLLP is designed to be implemented over a period of 24 months through the GLLP Learning Package, which can be delivered virtually or in-person. The Learning Package is flexible in length, format, and content, and can be adapted to meet country-specific workforce needs. The Learning Package includes all the materials necessary to implement the program in any country or educational institution in the world and includes:

  • GLLP Planning and Implementation Guide
  • GLLP Mentorship Guide
  • Virtual and in-person course materials
    • PowerPoint Presentations
    • Instructor Guides
    • Participant Guides

The GLLP course materials include four sections (Introduction, Laboratory Management, Laboratory Leadership, and Laboratory Systems), made up of 13 units and 43 modules, with over 200 contact hours’ worth of materials, all with a strong One Health focus.

Further information on the GLLP Learning Package and its development is available on the WHO website.

Moving Forward

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of laboratories, including their capacity to rapidly test and diagnose illness and provide data essential to policy decision-making and global health security. Specialized training for laboratory leaders, such as the Global Laboratory Leadership Programme, supports countries’ abilities to respond to future outbreaks and health emergencies.