Each year, from April to November, emerging hospital leaders across the world join the Young Executive Leaders (YEL) programme. This exciting activity, led by the International Hospital Federation (IHF), gives the selected participants the chance to build an international network, improve their management and leadership skills, and learn from experts about the latest innovations in healthcare.
Since 2021, the IHF has partnered with WittKieffer, a leading global executive search and advisory firm. Together, both organizations work collaboratively to offer a unique experience to the participants, and in turn contribute to improving healthcare through better leadership. Click here to view the official press release about IHF and WittKieffer’s partnership.
Between May and November, the participants attend a series of 10 interactive 90-minute masterclasses about various issues, including assessing their leadership style, harnessing big data, or working towards more sustainable healthcare. In parallel, participants will work in small groups and produce a short paper about one of these topics. Each month, the YEL publications will be made publicly available to share insights from your talents around the globe.
The capstone experience for the programme cohort is attending the 45th IHF World Hospital Congress (WHC), taking place from November 9 to 11 in Dubai.
By the end of the programme, participants are awarded a certificate of completion and join the YEL Alumni network.
The YEL programme is open to mid-career professionals working in a hospital, hospital association or ministry of health, and willing to develop their leadership skills while learning from international experiences. Candidates hold a leadership position within their organization or aspire to grow professionally to become better leaders. Applicants must be 40 years old or less, and be related to an IHF member organization.
Interested candidates wishing to join the adventure can submit their application to the Selection Committee on this online submission platform. In the application process, candidates will be asked questions related to their current professional role and their motivations. We also require an up-to-date Curriculum Vitae and a recommendation letter from their employer.
The application and participation to the programme is free of charge. However, participants will be required to pay for and attend the Congress either in person or virtually. The registration cost will be highly discounted for the YEL participants.
Participants can apply for a grant to cover their Congress registration fee and get financial support for travel and accommodation. Five recipients will be selected based on the need. For those who are not selected for the grant, the IHF will provide support to explore other sponsorship opportunities.
The YEL programme is governed by a Steering Committee, which assists in the design of the curriculum, provides guidance on the main work activities and act as oversight for the successful implementation of a high-quality programme.
Members of the Steering Committee are:
Please direct any questions regarding the Young Executive Leaders’ programme to the IHF Secretariat.
Once each cohort finishes its inital adventure, they graduate to join the YEL Alumni which offers the opportunity to remain involved in IHF’s activites and networks. The YEL Alumni currently includes participants from 2019, 2020 and 2021.
Click here for more information on the YEL Alumni, and read about their experiences as part of the YEL programme.
I have done many leadership development classes and programmes throughout my career, but few have been as valuable as the YEL programme though IHF. Learning from others across the world in a structured way has improved my leadership abilities and given me a new perspective on healthcare. The classes are unique and give insight into a variety of leadership and healthcare topics. I highly recommend this programme for any leader seeking global knowledge of healthcare interested in meeting leaders from across the world.
John Kueven, United States, YEL 2021
The IHF’s YEL 2021 programme was simply great! I learned a lot more about leadership in health care context and about myself. The experiences of collaborating internationally with peers worldwide was invaluable as well. The cherry on the cake was the World Hospital Congress, in which we met each other and other health care influencers.
Emil Ackerman, Finland, YEL 2021
My participation in the YEL programme, thanks to my nomination by the Brazilian Hospital Federation (FBH), has been very important for my personal and professional development. During the programme activities, I had the opportunity to learn from professionals and YEL colleagues from different countries and cultures. In addition to the programme's activities, the World Hospital Congress, in Barcelona (Spain), was essential to seal the bonds and collaborations established, creating a great network of cooperation between leaders from all over the world. With YEL Alumni, I realize that participating in this group will continuously help in my training. I thank the kindness, commitment and dedication of the entire IHF team and Wittkieffer team for the YEL 2021.
J. Antônio Cirino, Brazil, YEL 2021
Participating in the YEL programme gives a great chance to develop personally and professionally. Thanks to meetings with leaders from across the world, I now have a new perspective on the functioning of the health care system. The exchange of international experiences, especially in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, is one of the most valuable opportunities offered by the programme. It makes us realize that although the health systems different, we can all contribute to improving health through collective and meaningful action.
Urszula Szybowicz, Poland, YEL 2021
I am a pulmonologist and intensive care physician in Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Taiwan. I have committed myself to improve the medical information systems of our hospital for several years. It is a great honor to be one of the young executive leaders (YEL) 2020. Participating the YEL initiative is a great opportunity to network with young healthcare leaders worldwide. I got inspired by the various types of healthcare systems and hospital information systems worldwide. On the other hand, I shared our experiences in Taiwan as the medical service in Taiwan is probably one of the best in the world. Joining the YEL alumni, we can keep networking and keep learning from one another.
Ming-Ju Tsai, Taiwan, YEL 2020
I am very grateful to the organization and my hospital for allowing my participation in this program. I hope that over the next few months we can see each other face to face with the 2020 participants. We have been able to work and co-create a lot of ideas during this time. We did a good job together.
Omar Rodríguez Forner, Spain, YEL 2020
I joined YEL to represent the United States in our efforts and opportunities in the provision of healthcare, to form relationships with like-minded young leaders around the world, and to gain a better perspective of what others are doing to improve health of their communities. Have absolutely loved being a part of such an amazing group of global healthcare leaders!
Scott Mortensen, United States, YEL 2019
My motivation for joining the YEL was to widen my eyesight to outreach from a clinician to another level — administration. I am excited to get to know this network and build it up worldwide through YEL program.
Daniel Wong, Hong Kong, YEL 2019
These opportunities are invaluable for young leaders - we really had no rules or boundaries when we started and we defined what we wanted to do. It is a rare opportunity to have that kind of freedom and also then have a venue to present and celebrate our collective successes and achievements. This program should be nurtured and grown to continue to foster leadership development in health care internationally.
David Ross, Canada, YEL 2019
The YEL program was a unique opportunity to build an international network of young senior health managers sharing the same interests and highly committed to improve the health system of their own countries. It was also very interesting to mix people with medical and administrative backgrounds. I especially liked the opportunity to meet each other at the Oman IHF Congress. I plan to stay committed to this program as a YEL alumni.
Guillaume Duriez, France, YEL 2019
My motivation for joining the YEL program was to obtain broader exposure to innovation in healthcare in order to help facilitate deeper and different thinking within both my organization and my expanded community of healthcare colleagues to solve more complex issues in a rapidly changing environment. Sharing my learnings and understandings from this experience has benefited not only my personal development, but has created lifelong connections with individuals I now consider friends
Melinda Bemis, United States, YEL 2019