Advisory Board

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Advisory Board

The Advisory Board is an independent body within the HBM4EU governing structure that provides advice to the Management Board on the planning, implementation and conduct of the HBM4EU Programme. The Advisory Board is free to act on its own initiative to formulate proposals and give advice in accordance with the procedures set out in their Rules of procedures.

It is composed of experts from large human biomonitoring initiatives of countries that are not participating in the HBM4EU Programme, of coordinators or representatives of other or related European and international projects and experts from social and political sciences, with no conflict of interest with the HBM4EU programme.

Its members are appointed by the Governing Board upon proposal by the Management Board. The Advisory Board is convened by the Coordinator and chaired by its elected president, Douglas Haines. The term of Advisory Board members is for the whole duration of the HBM4EU programme, 2017 to 2021.

The Advisory Board meets as required, at a minimum once a year. The first meeting of the Advisory Board took place on September 6th 2017 in Berlin.


  • IIdefonso Hernández Aguado
  • Carl-Gustuv Bornehag
  • Antonia Calafat
  • Anne Gourmelon
  • Douglas Haines (Chair)
  • Karl-Heinz Jöckel
  • Gary W. Miller
  • Shoji F. Nakayama
  • Sebastian Oberthür
  • Elke Schneider

Photo of the Advisory Board members and of Dorota Jarosinska from the World Health Organisation European Centre for Environment and Health

From left to right: Carl-Gustaf Bornehag, Dorota Jarosinska (Dorota is not a member of the Advisory Board), Elke Schneider, Gary W. Miller, Antonia Calafat, Sebastian Oberthür, Shoji Nakayama, Douglas Haines

Short bios of the members of the Advisory Board

Ildefonso Hernández Aguado is Professor of Public Health at the Miguel Hernández University (Alicante) where he is Director of the Department of Public Health, History of Science and Gynaecology and the Director of the Group of Research in clinical epidemiology and health services. He is the former Director General of Public Health of the Ministry of Health and Social Policy (2008-2011), where he directed the preparation of the General Law on Public Health presenting the Health Impact Assessment to evaluate the health effects of public policies and the laws on tobacco control. He led the report: “Advancing Equity and Health: Monitoring the Social Determinants of Health and Reducing Health Inequalities.” He was a member of the Standing Committee of the Regional Committee for Europe (WHO), the Management Board of the European Center for Disease Control and the WHO Scientific Committee. He has been President of the Spanish Society of Epidemiology and is now Vice President of the Spanish Society of Public Health and Health Administration and member of the Board of Directors of the World Federation of Public Health Associations.

Carl-Gustaf Bornehag is involved in the EU project EDC-MixRisk, researching on different topics related to chemical mixtures. He is an environmental scientist with a background in engineering (M.Sc.Eng) and public health science (PhD, Professor). As a scientist, he has conducted several large multidisciplinary studies on associations between indoor environmental factors and health, mainly asthma and allergies among children and sick building syndrome symptoms among adults. Carl-Gustaf Bornehag is the principal investigator for two large epidemiological studies in Sweden, Dampness in Buildings and Health (DBH) and Swedish Environmental, Longitudinal Mother and Child study on Asthma and allergy (Selma). In Sweden he has been involved in governmental inquiries regarding allergies and environmental-health issues and he has been involved in European multidisciplinary reviews of the total scientific literature with regard to indoor environmental factors and health.

Antonia Calafat is the Chief of the Organic Analytical Toxicology Branch at the Division of Laboratory Sciences, National Center for Environmental Health of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. She earned her Bachelor, Master and Doctoral degrees in Chemistry from the University of the Balearic Islands (Spain). Prior to her career at CDC, she was a Fulbright Scholar and a Research Associate at Emory University. She currently leads CDC’s biomonitoring programs for assessing human exposure to organic chemicals, such as pesticides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, organophosphate flame retardants, PFAS, persistent organic pollutants, phthalates and other plasticizers, and bisphenols. Antonia has applied HBM to numerous population studies in collaboration with leading scientists in the fields of exposure science, epidemiology, and health assessment, and contributed to HBM national programs including CDC’s National Reports on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals using samples from the National Health and Examination Survey (NHANES).

Anne Gourmelon was trained in France, Spain (Valencia) and Netherlands (Wageningen). She worked in international organizations such as FAO and then at OECD first as project manager and now as principal administrator. She is considered as an expert in endocrine disruptors and is invited worldwide to speak on those issues.

Douglas Haines is the Chair of the Advisory Board. He has an expertise of about 30 years as head and science advisor in Health Canada’s Healthy Environments and Consumer Safety Branch. Under the Government of Canada’s Chemicals Management Plan he developed and implemented the national human biomonitoring and environmental monitoring initiatives to track Canadians’ exposures to environmental chemicals and their integration into health risk assessments. This includes the biomonitoring component of the Canadian Health Measures Survey and surveillance in Canada’s north which is carried out in partnership with the federal Northern Contaminants Program. In his career in environmental health, he has been engaged in issues spanning air pollution, ecosystem health, climate change, and chemical surveillance and monitoring.

Karl-Heinz Jöckel is Director of the Institute for Medical Informatics, Biometry and Epidemiology at the University Clinics of Essen. He is a member of various expert associations. Amongst others he has been the scientific director of the association of the National Cohort, an epidemiologic study for health and disease research in Germany which aims to develop new strategies for risk assessment, early detection, and prevention of major chronic diseases. Moreover, he chaired the joint scientific committee of the German Ministry of Health giving advice on scientific issues.

Gary Miller is an experimental toxicologist and pharmacologist who has considerably worked on neurotransmitters. He heads the HERCULES program on chemical exposome in the US ( Its aim is to provide tools to explore the chemical exposome using modern metabolomics methods and support for epidemiological and clinical studies. He is also editor in chief of “Toxicological Sciences”. In addition to his own research, he has written a number of reviews on the chemical exposome and on the integration of different sciences in the exposome work.

Shoji Nakayama is a lead exposure scientist for the Japan Environment and Children’s Study (JECS), which is a national longitudinal birth cohort study involving 100,000 mothers and children. He is head of the Exposure Dynamics Research Section, Centre for Health and Environmental Risk Research, National Institute for Environmental Studies, Japan. His expertise is in exposure science, especially in children’s exposure. Dr Nakayama holds MD and PhD in public health, and is certified Public Health Specialist/Supervisor of Japan Board of Public Health and Social Medicine. In 2005, Dr Nakayama was invited to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) and worked on exposure research on perfluorinated alkyl compounds. Dr Nakayama joined the National Institute for Environmental Studies in Japan in 2011.

Sebastian Oberthür is Professor for Environment and Sustainable Development at the IES. Trained as a political scientist with a strong background in international law, he focuses on issues of international and European environmental governance, with an emphasis on institutional issues and perspectives. His current research interest extends in particular to the horizontal and vertical integration of international institutions and policies relevant to the environment, including the interplay between environmental agreements/institutions and other policies (e.g. trade, transport), as well as the role and performance of the EU in international (environmental) institutions. He was a member of the Compliance Committee of the Kyoto Protocol to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. Since 1996, he has also been an appointed member and representative of the International Council of Environmental Law (ICEL). From 2005 to 2007, he served as a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change (IDGEC) project of the International Human Dimensions Programme (IHDP). He is a member of Climate Strategies – an international research network focusing on climate and energy policy. Sebastian Oberthür has dealt with issues of international environmental policy as well as climate policy since the early 1990s. He has worked on the development and implementation of various environmental agreements and international environmental institutions, as well as climate policies. He has, inter alia, conducted studies on the interaction between international institutions, the Kyoto Protocol to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the structure and design of the system of international environmental institutions, the role of non-governmental organizations in international environmental governance, the reporting of data under the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, and the foreign environmental policy making of the European Union in international environmental agreements.

Elke Schneider, senior project manager, has been active at the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) since 2002, on a variety of topics and related to the Agency´s European Week for Safety and Health at Work campaigns. She was involved in setting up the Agency’s European risk observatory, preparing campaigns, for example on the protection of workers from the risks linked to exposure to (chemical and biological) dangerous substances, and the “Occupational Safety and Health in figures” project combining occupational health and safety statistics at the European and national level and OSH research. Elke Schneider has a degree in technical chemistry/ biochemistry and a doctorate in technical sciences from the Technical University of Vienna, Austria. In 1991, she joined the Austrian Central Labour Inspectorate as an expert on occupational hygiene and has been involved
in preparing regulations transposing EU Directives in the framework of Austria’s adherence to the EU. She has been a national delegate to the EU Commission and Council and involved in cooperation with SLIC (the Senior Labour Inspectors’ Committee). She has also been a member in the Austrian Association of Toxicologists. Before joining EU-OSHA in 2002, Elke Schneider worked as deputy head of unit for European and International Affairs at the central authority of the Austrian Labour Inspection within the Ministry of Economics and Labour, now Labour, Social Affairs and Consumer Protection. For a number of years, she was involved with editing and the content preparation of the Austrian OEL list (MAK-Werte-Liste, now Grenzwerteverordnung). She has also been an invited guest to the German MAK-Werte-Kommission and the AGS.


The HBM4EU project was launched in 2016 with the aim of improving the collective understanding of human exposure to hazardous chemicals and developing HBM as an exposure assessment method. The project had €74m in funding and jointly implemented by 120 partners from 28 participating countries – 24 EU member states plus Norway, Switzerland, Iceland and Israel and the European Environment Agency. One of its aims was to ensure the sustainability of HBM in the EU beyond 2021. The project ended in June 2022. The website will not be updated any longer, except the page on peer reviewed publications, but will be online until 2032.