We are pleased to share with you this post from Anar Ulikpan, our first ever Mongolian student who was part of our Emerging Voices experience over the last weeks.

Dear extraordinary ITM Team and all my Emerging Voices colleagues,

I have arrived home last night safely with wonderful memories of Antwerp and Montreux in my mind and heart.

I want to express my heartfelt thanks for all your hardwork, support, commitment, and especially for your motivation that is ”highly infectious”to motivate others.

I am amazed by ITM teamwork that enabled such a diverse and muticultural representative training event to happen so efficiently. These 3 weeks experience was the most intensive learning experience I have ever had. When I first heard about the pecha-kucha style of presentation I have felt that it is just impossible for people like me who struggle to convey ideas clearly in Englsih as this style of presentation virtually requires super-fluency even from those native speakers. However, with your generous and intense support I’ve managed it. You have done fantastic work!!! It was transformative experience for me. Thank you!!!

Now, to share some other feelings……There were times that I felt that I was an odd person to this event as many of the people both ITM and EVs did not know much about my country, and in  fact I was the first Mongolian student for ITM. However, the atmosphere created by ITM and EVs made me feel like bridging this gap and maybe bringing more Mongolian students to get this wonderful experience of learning together and sharing the knowledge and experiences.

Regarding the WHO first global symposium on health systems research, of course it provided a wonderful opportunity for EVs to meet many of the leaders of the public health arena whom many of us  had only been able to know through their papers. I would not say the symposium was perfect as there were a number of same old messages repeatedly being told without giving a practical solutions to the real-world problems.But, the important thing is that the symposium appreciated the significance of the systems perspectives and acknowledged the complexity of the health system by advocating for looking at the system in a holistic manner. The symposium also allowed that research communities from high, middle and low income countries and even young and emerging voices got together to this global event to share experiences and learn from each others’ lessons.  There is a saying in Mongolia ”Talking is the beginning of the action”. So, I do hope this momentum will carry on to bring tangible results to contribute to the achievement of the universal health coverage.

with my warmest regards,


Dr Anar Ulikpan
National Consultant on Health Management and SWAp Third Health Sector Development Project, ADB Ministry of Health, Mongolia

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