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V4 WORKING GROUP

The Visegrad Group (also known as the "Visegrad Four" or simply "V4") reflects the efforts of the countries of the Central European region to work together in a number of fields of common interest within the all-European integration. The Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia have always been part of a single civilization sharing cultural and intellectual values and common roots in diverse religious traditions, which they wish to preserve and further strengthen.

All the activities of the Visegrad Group are aimed at strengthening stability in the Central European region. The participating countries perceive their cooperation as a challenge and its success as the best proof of their ability to integrate also into such structures, such as the European Union. (http://www.visegradgroup.eu/about).

The V4 cooperation can currently be referred to as the most clearly profiled initiative in Central Europe. The backbone of this cooperation consists of mutual contacts at all levels - from the highest-level political summits to expert and diplomatic meetings, to activities of the non-governmental associations in the region, think-tanks and research bodies, cultural institutions or numerous networks of individuals.

Cooperation between the respective ministries constitutes an important part of the activities within the V4 framework, whether at the level of the ministers or in the form of joint expert teams. A number of joint projects are currently being implemented particularly in the fields of culture, environment, internal security, defence, science and education.

Visegrad cooperation is not institutionalized in any manner. It is based solely on the principle of periodical meetings of its representatives at various levels (from the high-level meetings of prime ministers and heads of states to expert consultations). The only organization within the V4 platform is the International Visegrad Fund. The fund—established in 2000 with the aim of supporting the development of cooperation in culture, scientific exchange, research, education, exchange of students and development of cross-border cooperation. This V4 platform might be one of the supporting sources for a new ASPHER V4 Working Group and its activities.

* V4 is an alliance of four Central European states – Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia – for the purposes of furthering their European integration, as well as for advancing cooperation with one another in various fields.

Key objectives:

Supporting partnerships and networking of public health experts in the Visegrad Group countries (also called Visegrad Four or 4).

Strengthening the Evidence Based Public Health in the V4 countries in the time of increasing risk of cross-border threats to the human health with special focus on research and capacity development in the areas of systematic reviews, knowledge transfer and information sharing, partnerships and networking of all key stakeholders involved.

Strengthen and further developing cooperation focused on public health related aspects of the ongoing migration crisis.

Develop and implement joint research projects (primary and secondary research) on agreed V4 WG priorities.

Fundraising to develop and implement joint V4 projects (small and standards grants, strategic grants, and strategic conferences).

Members:

CZECH REPUBLIC

Department of Social Medicine and Public Health, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, Palacky University, Olomouc

HUNGARY

Faculty of Public Health, University of Debrecen

POLAND

Faculty of Health Sciences, Medical University of Warsaw

SLOVAKIA

Department of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences and Social Work, Trnava University

All professionals in the ASPHER community are welcome to support the work of the ASPHER V4 Working Group.