The International Network for Research on Inequalities in Child Health (INRICH) was created in 2008 by a group of researchers interested in tackling the problem of health disparities among children. The researchers come from various field of studies ranging from medical doctors, social scientists and epidemiologists to economists.


  • To become a valued & productive forum for active researchers in the field of child health inequalities;
  • To be a platform for knowledge synthesis and systematic reviews bringing together evidence related to child health inequalities, equity and policy;
  • To be a platform for collaborative studies among researchers from various field of studies;
  • To play an important role in knowledge transfer to policy makers.

INRICH mission statement : to advance knowledge and research into inequalities in child health and well-being, in child health equity and child policy by establishing a scientific community in which research priorities can be identified, collaborative projects established and new researchers encouraged and to inform policy that will promote child health equity.

INRICH future vision

  1. We envisage that the network will become a valued and productive forum for active researchers in the field
  2. Within 2 years, we will have identified the key researchers in this field and recruited the majority to the network
  3. We envisage that the network will be a platform for knowledge synthesis and systematic reviews bringing together evidence related to child health inequalities, equity and policy
  4. Within 2 years, we will have completed and published the systematic review
  5. We envisage that the network will be a platform for collaborative studies
  6. Within 2 years, we will have prepared and submitted at least one collaborative project in addition to the systematic review
  7. We envisage that the network will play an important role in knowledge transfer to policy makers
  8. To have made links with and started discussions with policy makers with a view to knowledge transfer

INRICH Research Priorities

We identified the following research priorities that can be conducted by members of our network:

1. Pathways and mechanisms

  • Cumulative and additive social risk exposures (e.g. transient v. persistent poverty);
  • Stress and allostatic load;
  • Social into the biological and epigenetic;
  • Intergenerational influences

2. Methodological issues

  • Methods for examining change over time including longitudinal effects studies
  • Need to define poverty
  • Need to study social gradients as well as poverty
  • Multi-level studies - Society, Family & Individual
  • Regional studies (within countries)
  • Which indicators?: for example, perception of health vs. objective measures of health (these may be more reliable in studying mechanisms)
  • Root cause analysis to inform policy change.

3. Interventions

  • Children’s rights & equity – research into effective use as tools to reduce child health inequalities Policy innovation
  • What works in reducing child health inequalities?

INRICH International Projects/Comparisons

We strongly encourage collaborative works that are conducted in a comparative basis within or between countries. The following is a list of non exhaustive potential topics of great interest to our members.

  • Societal and policy level influences – what kinds of societies promote child well-being and why?
  • Examples: role of wealth transfer; comparing social gradients in child health outcomes across countries; role of paid maternity leave; role of breastfeeding promotion; using LCHD framework to explore how policy in different countries impact on children’s developmental trajectories
  • Comparing social gradients in perinatal health indicators, in different countries. Risks differences versus risk ratios. (Nick & Anders to explore)
  • Policies and their relationship to health outcomes. Funding being applied for and would welcome collaborators to study data
  • Design study using standard measures in, for example, 2 neighborhoods in Montreal, 2 in Brazil, 2 in UK.
  • Studies based on current cohorts – comparative secondary analysis of outcomes and relationships with social phenomena (extension of Dr. Louise Seguin and Dr. Nicholas Spencer’s work using ELDEQ & UKMCS)
  • Studies on impact of current international situation: changes in economy, families moved into poverty, impact on children’s health and well-being
  • Studies of safety nets in different countries


Sixth INRICH Annual Workshop
Center for Health Equity Studies (CHESS), Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm University (June 12-13, 2014)


Information on past annual workshops



Nicolas L. Gilbert, Nathalie Auger, Russell Wilkins, Michael S. Kramer. Neighbourhood Income and Neonatal, Postneonatal and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Mortality in Canada, 1991-2005. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 2013.

Karl Gauffin, Bo Vinnerljung, Mats Fridell, Morten Hesse & Anders Hjern. Addiction Research Report – Childhood socio-economic status, school failure and drug abuse: a Swedish national cohort study. Addiction, 2013.

Karl Gauffin, Tomas Hemmingsson & Anders Hjern. The effect of childhood socioeconomic position on alcohol-related disorders later in life: a Swedish national cohort study. J Epidemiol Community Health, 2013.

Evans, G. W., Li, D., & Sepanski Whipple, S. (2013, April 8). Cumulative Risk and Child Development. Psychological Bulletin.

Jerker Karlén, Anneli Frostell, Elvar Theodorsson, Tomas Faresjö and Johnny, Maternal Influence on Child HPA Axis: A Prospective Study of Cortisol Levels in Hair, Pediatrics, published online October 7, 2013.

Gary W. Evans, Pilyoung Kim, Childhood Poverty, Chronic Stress, Self-Regulation, and Coping, Child Development Perspectives, Volume 7, Number 1, 2013, Pages 43-48.

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Lucie Lévesque, coordinator: