Our mission is to reduce the burden of major acute respiratory virus infections by fostering stakeholder communication and cross-disciplinary research in Europe.

Our motivation

Our mission is to reduce the burden of major acute respiratory virus infections by fostering stakeholder communication and cross-disciplinary research in Europe.

Founded in 1992, The European Scientific Working group on Influenza and other Respiratory Viruses (ESWI) is a network organisation that aims to reduce the burden of influenza and other acute respiratory viruses in Europe. 

At the core of the group are twelve leading scientific experts from different disciplines: virology, immunology, microbiology, epidemiology, mathematical  modelling, paediatrics and family medicine. ESWI is a partnership of these scientific experts, working in close collaboration with organisations of public health officials, healthcare professionals, and high-risk groups. Our collective aim is to reduce the number of casualties caused by respiratory viruses (influenza, RSV and COVID-19), by fostering cross-disciplinary research and by focusing on stakeholder communication to raise awareness and cooperation, particularly in the fight against epidemics and pandemics caused by viruses. 

Our  scientists recognise that they have a moral duty to advance research and drive innovation to help reduce the burden of influenza and other contagious viral respiratory diseases in society. Influenza vaccines can be life-saving for patients at risk and not giving antivirals to critical patients can be fatal. And yet, in Europe, seasonal influenza claims more lives than traffic accidents. ESWI therefore believes that experts must continue to work hard to explain the importance  of influenza control, prevention and treatment to the general public. And we should be clear about the scientific uncertainties too. After all, research on viruses is a moving target. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown the devastating health, social and economic effects a virus can cause, and hence there is a  need for an increased and continued collaboration to stem and prevent future outbreaks.

To voice these scientifically sound messages, the ESWI network develops tailor-made tools and for this effort, we are fortunate to be able to rely on various partnerships and financial resources to fund our projects. However, under all circumstances, ESWI remains an independent organisation of socially-concerned members and partners. None of our members receives monetary compensation for ESWI work. ESWI’s partners all share the objective to improve public health protection against respiratory viruses, making the ESWI network a unique and effective organisation to address influenza, RSV and COVID-19 issues in Europe.

Introducing ESWI