News and Views

ana cespedes

Keeping and cultivating the contact between its executive search member firms is one of Agilium Worldwide’s fundamental missions and strengths. Nurturing the global network, particularly during the current circumstances where personal contact and mobility are severely restricted, calls for intensified interaction via the digital channels available. Recently, Agilium Worldwide brought its members from all over the world together via an informative webinar on the continued impact of the pandemic on our lives and our business activities. Ana Cespedes, COO of IAVI ( unraveled some fact-packed visuals and gave Agilium Worldwide’s members the opportunity to explore the brass tacks of the COVID-19 pandemic and the global status of the vaccines.

“Just whereabouts are we in this pandemic and how can we get out of it?” Ana’s expert perspective helped us in particular to understand and critically analyze self-reported statistics and their significance - political, scientific, and sociological – during the current “communication crisis”, just one of several other crises (healthcare, economic, educational) we are having to cope with right now.

Whilst controlling the virus with vaccines is an essential measure in the “COVID-19 toolkit”, we still need to be vigilant about the others: testing, identifying treatments, and individual responsibility (hands, face, space). Ana reviewed the status of the approved vaccines and treatments, discussing what is available, its efficacy, the safety and quality, when it will be available to everyone, and at which point we expect to achieve herd immunity. 2021 has begun with a flicker of hope on the horizon, yet “we are not safe until we are all safe”. The race to produce and secure vaccines is already in full swing, however, the virus is still evolving and further substantial investment in vaccine development programs is absolutely indispensible.

Ana Cespedes is COO of IAVI, an American non-profit organization that supports scientific progress in fighting infectious diseases. Ana has a PhD in pharmacy, an MBA, and more than 20 years of leadership experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech sectors.

Founded in 1984, Agilium Worldwide LLC ( is an international executive search group of independent, owner-managed retained executive search firms, with members who are active in virtually every market. Agilium Worldwide ranks among the world’s top 25 executive search organizations.

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