Boutros-Pierre Mansourian is a medical graduate from the Universities of Cairo and Lausanne. He pursued his postgraduate training in the University of London (biomedical engineering, neurophysiology, and epidemiology) before joining WHO in 1969, with the Division of Research in Epidemiology and Communication Science. A few years later he was appointed to the Office of Science and Technology, an advisory unit to the Director General. He continued with that office (subsequently renamed Research, Promotion, and Development), serving as its Director from 1994 until retirement (1998). He published original work in a wide range of fields including neurophysiology, medical informatics, systems analysis (transfer function of the vestibulo-ocular control system), and epidemiology (digital filters and pattern recognition techniques in epidemiological variables). He served as Secretary of WHO’s Advisory Committee on Health Research, and participated closely with that body in the formulation of research strategies and policy principles for the Organization during the 1980s and 1990s. In his co-ordinating roles he has been instrumental in promoting new methodologies such as remote sensing, systems modeling, and artificial intelligence in various WHO programmes.
Dr Mansourian is an elected member of the US Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (1968), the Belgian Royal Academy of Overseas Sciences (1998), and the City and Guilds of London Institute (1999). He is also a member of the Royal Society of Medicine, the New York Academy of Sciences, the American Public Health Association, and the International Epidemiological Association.