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About Sickkids
About SickKids

Zulfiqar A. Bhutta, PhD, MBBS, FRCPCH, FAAP

The Hospital for Sick Children
Co-Director, Director of Research
Centre for Global Child Health

Research Institute
Senior Scientist
Child Health Evaluative Sciences

University of Toronto
Department of Nutritional Sciences

Professor, Division of Epidemiology
Dalla Lana School of Public Health

Chair Positions
Robert Harding Chair in Global Child Health and Policy

Other Positions

Aga Khan University
Founding Director of the Center of Excellence in Women and Child Health

Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations Board
Global Academic Research Member

International Pediatric Association (IPA)
President & Executive Committee Member

The Coalition of Centres in Global Child Health

Phone: 416-813-7654 ext. 328532
Fax: 416-813-8763 ext. 208763
Email: zulfiqar.bhutta@sickkids.ca

For more information, visit:

The Centre for Global Child Health

Brief Biography

Dr. Zulfiqar A. Bhutta is the Inaugural Robert Harding Chair in Global Child Health at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), Co-Director of the SickKids Centre for Global Child Health and the Founding Director of the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health at the Aga Khan University, unique joint appointments. He also holds adjunct professorships at several leading Universities globally including the Schools of Public Health at Johns Hopkins (Baltimore), Tufts University (Boston), Boston University School of Public Health, University of Alberta as well as the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. He is a designated Distinguished National Professor of the Government of Pakistan and was the Founding Chair of the National Research Ethics Committee of the Government of Pakistan from 2003-2014. Dr. Bhutta was a member of the Independent Expert Review Group (iERG) appointed by the UN Secretary General for monitoring global progress in maternal and child health MDGs (2011-2015). He represented the global academic and research organizations on the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (Gavi) Board and was the Co-Chair of the Global Countdown for 2015 Initiative from 2006-2016. Dr. Bhutta is the Co-Chair of the Maternal and Child Health oversight committee of the World Health Organization (WHO) Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMRO) and the Chairman of The Coalition of Centres in Global Child Health with its secretariat based at SickKids.  

Dr. Bhutta studied at the University of Peshawar (MBBS) and obtained his PhD from the Karolinska Institute, Sweden. He is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (Edinburgh & London), the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (London), American Academy of Pediatrics and the Pakistan Academy of Sciences. He heads a large research team in Pakistan working on issues of maternal, newborn and child survival and nutrition globally and regionally. Dr. Bhutta has served as a member of the Global Advisory Committee for Health Research for the World Health Organization, the Board of Child & Health and Nutrition Initiative of Global Forum for Health Research, and the steering committees of the International Zinc and Vitamin A Nutrition Consultative Groups. He was a founding board member of the Global Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH). He is a board member of the International Centre for Diarrheal Diseases Research. Dr. Bhutta was a member of the WHO Strategic Advisory Committee for Vaccines (SAGE) from 2010-15 and the Advisory Committee for Health Research of the WHO EMRO. He is the past-President of the Commonwealth Association of Paediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition (CAPGAN) and the Federation of Asia-Oceania Perinatal Societies (FAOPS). As the President-elect of the International Pediatric Association (IPA 2016-2019), he is a leading voice for health professionals supporting integrated maternal, newborn and child health globally.

Research Interests

With a vast portfolio, Dr. Bhutta’s research interests are numerous. He leads large research groups based in Toronto, Karachi and Nairobi with a special interest in research synthesis, scaling up evidence-based interventions in community settings and implementation research in health systems contexts. In particular, his work with community health workers and outreach services has influenced integrated maternal and newborn outreach programs for marginalized populations all over the world. In addition to his long-standing research interests in newborn and child survival, maternal and child undernutrition, early childhood development and micronutrient deficiencies, Dr. Bhutta’s current research on adolescent and reproductive health has led to several major contributions to the evidence base, including publications in the Journal of Adolescent Health and the Lancet. Additionally, Dr. Bhutta’s research has expanded to include, trauma and injuries, studies of neglected tropical diseases such as typhoid fever and soil-transmitted helminths, and reviews on RMNCAH&N in humanitarian crisis settings given the increase in refugee and displaced populations globally.


Dr. Bhutta has won several awards, including the Tamgha-i-Imtiaz (Medal of Excellence) by the President of Pakistan for contributions towards education and research (2000), the President of Pakistan Gold Medal for contributions to Child Health in Pakistan (2004) and the Outstanding Pediatrician of Asia award by the Asia Pacific Pediatric Association (2006). He is the first dual recipient of the Aga Khan University Distinguished Faculty Award for Research (2005) and Award of Distinction (2012). Dr. Bhutta was awarded the inaugural Programme for Global Pediatric Research Award for Outstanding Contributions to Global Child Health (2009) and the Kenneth Warren prize for the best systematic review of community based interventions by the Cochrane collaboration in 2011. Dr. Bhutta was awarded the Global Advocacy Prize by the Royal College of Paediatrics & Child Health in 2012, the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Sam Fomon Award for lifetime contributions to Nutrition Research (2014), the WHO Ihsan Dogramaci Family Health award (2014), the inaugural TUBA Academy of Sciences Award for global contributions to Health and Life Sciences (2015), University of Toledo Medical Missions Hall of Fame Award (2016), the Center for Disease Control Shepard Science Award Lectureship for 2016, and The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) 2016 prize in medical sciences.


Dr. Bhutta is on several international editorial advisory boards including the Lancet, BMJ, PLoS Medicine, PLoS ONE, BMC Public Health and the Cochrane ARI group. He has published eight books, 80 book chapters, and over 800 indexed publications to date, including 100+ in the world’s leading journal Lancet alone. Dr. Bhutta's recent publications of note include:

  • Achieving maternal and child health gains in Afghanistan: a case study in resilience (2016)
  • Reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health: key messages from Disease Control Priorities (2016)
  • Lancet series on Early Childhood Development (2016)
  • Global Nutrition Report 2016: From Promise to Impact: Ending Malnutrition Primer by 2030 (2016)
  • Adolescent Health Interventions: Conclusions, Evidence Gaps, and Research Priorities (2016)
  • Global Nutrition Report 2015: Actions and accountability to advance nutrition and sustainable development (2015)
  • Every woman, every child, every adolescent: achievements and prospects: the final report of the independent Expert Review Group on Information and Accountability for Women’s and Children’s health (2015)
  • Lancet series on Maternal and Child Undernutrition (2013)
  • Lancet Series on Childhood Diarrhea and Pneumonia (2013)
  • Lancet series on Pakistan (2013)
  • Countdown to 2015 Summary papers in the Lancet (2008, 2010, 2013 & 2015)
  • Lancet series on Stillbirths (2011)