They value breadth and depth in the activities they support
They remain true to the vision and values of their founder, Sir Henry Wellcome, a medical entrepreneur, collector and philanthropist. Their work today reflects the amazing breadth of Henry's interests, and his belief that science and research expand knowledge by testing and investigating ideas. Their governance is based on an updated version of his will.
Their funding supports over 14,000 people in more than 70 countries. In the next five years, they aim to spend up to £5 billion helping thousands of curious, passionate people all over the world explore ideas in science, population health, medical innovation, the humanities and social sciences and public engagement.
For example, one of the world’s biggest challenges is how to be better prepared for the next major epidemic. They take on this problem in many different ways – here are just a handful:
Vaccine development, such as when they co-funded the development of a new Ebola vaccine
Public health interventions, such as insecticide-treated bednets for malaria
Behavioural projects, such as training health workers to reduce risk of infection while working on the frontline
Social science, including research into the ethics of medical trials involving pregnant women, of urgent importance because of the Zika virus.
Developing research leaders in regions most affected by infectious disease (as they’ve done through their DELTAS Africa initiative)
Advocacy, encouraging governments and global businesses to take part in building a more secure future for global health