Research in Progress (RIP): "The State of Vaccine Confidence: A Global Perspective"



Heidi J. Larson

Date and Time

April 13, 2016 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

FSI Contact

Nicole Feldman

All research in progress seminars are off-the-record. Any information about methodology and/or results are embargoed until publication.


The Vaccine Confidence Project (VCP) is a research group, led by Dr. Heidi Larson. The VCP studies the diverse sociocultural, political and psychological influences which affect confidence in vaccines and immunisation programmes in local settings worldwide, as well as examining trans-national influences. The VCP has developed multiple metrics to measure population confidence in vaccines and immunization programmes, from a survey-based Vaccine Confidence Index to temporal analysis of media and social media monitoring of vaccine sentiment  and local qualitative research to understand the drivers of vaccine reluctance and refusal. Together, these diverse metrics  generate a rich picture of the drivers of vaccine confidence to hep inform interventions.

While all the evidence points to the importance of understanding locally nuanced drivers of vaccine reluctance to inform interventions, Dr. Larson will talk about the equally important transnational impacts of local vaccine events and emotions through global cases studies on HPV, Polio, Flu and Ebola, and the implications for vaccine preparedness around newly introduced vaccines and programmes as well as pandemic preparedness.


Heidi J. Larson, PhD,  is an anthropologist and Senior Lecturer, Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, LSHTM, an Associate Clinical Professor, Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation, University of Washington, Seattle, and a Fellow at the Chatham House Centre on Global Health Security. Dr. Larson previously headed Global Communication for Immunisation at UNICEF and chaired the Advocacy Task Force for GAVI (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation). She was also a  member of the WHO SAGE working group dealing with vaccine hesitancy.   Dr. Larson’s research focuses on the analysis of the social and political factors that can affect uptake on health interventions, particularly vaccines, and the implications for policies and programmes. Her particular interest is on risk and rumour management from clinical trials to delivery – and building public trust. Dr. Larson is currently the Principle Investigator for a large European Union grant (EBODAC) on the deployment, acceptance and compliance of an Ebola prime-boost vaccine trial in Sierra Leone.

*This seminar is co-sponsored with the Stanford Center for Innovation in Global Health*