Papers of Baron Professor Peter Piot

Scope and Content

Papers of Baron Professor Peter Piot (b. 1949), comprise of his early fieldwork on the Ebola virus and HIV/AIDS in Democratic Republic of Congo; correspondence files and research reports relating to his tenure as Professor in Microbiology at the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp (ITM), 1980-1992; correspondence and reports from his role as Associate Director of the Global Programme on AIDS, World Health Organisation (WHO), 1992-1994, along with material relating to the 2003 Director-General election campaign; administrative and working papers relating from his Executive-Directorship of Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), 1995-2008, incorporating the establishment of the organisation; speeches; meeting notes; conferences; campaign material and associated institutional papers for the Global Fund against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, United States President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the World Health Organisation. Papers also include collected articles, newspaper articles and reports relating to Piot's career and various topics relating to the global strategy for the prevention of HIV/AIDS.

Administrative / Biographical History

Baron Professor Peter Karcl Piot, was born on the 17th February 1949 in Louvain, Belgium. He grew up in a small farming village in Flanders, Keerbergen and studied medicine at the University of Ghent (achieving his M.D. in 1974) and after graduation moved to the Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, to work under Dr S. R. Pattyn. In 1976, he and his colleague, Guido van der Groen, were chosen from the School to join the WHO International Commission investigating the then unknown Ebola virus in Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo), having been part of the team that had isolated the virus. In 1978, he worked in the United States under Dr King K Holmes in Seattle and Dr Stanley Falkow in the University of Washington on sexually transmitted diseases. He returned to Antwerp and in 1979 and in 1980 finished his PhD in microbiology and became Associate Professor of Microbiology and Head of the Division of Microbiology at the Institute. Based in Antwerp, he set up a number of international projects in Africa chiefly looking at the spread of the HIV/AIDS on the continent. In 1983, he helped establish the international project based in Kinshasa, known as Projet SIDA that was the initial source of epidemiological work on HIV/AIDS in Africa. Between 1986-1987 he became an Associate Professor, Department of Medical Microbiology at the University of Nairobi, Kenya. The following year, he became chair of the Steering Committee on Epidemiology and Surveillance of WHO's Global Programme on AIDS. In 1991 he was elected President of the International AIDS Society and then left his position in Antwerp to move to Geneva to become an Associate Director of the Global Programme on AIDS, World Health Organisation. In 1995, he was elected Executive-Director of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and served in this position for thirteen years before leaving in 2008 to become Professor of Global Health, Imperial College London. In 2010, he was appointed Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Peter Piot has received a number of honours and awards including membership of the Royal Academy of Medicine, Belgium, 1989; serving as President of the King Baudouin Foundation, Brussels, 2007-11; Commandeur: Ordre du Lion (Senegal), 2005; National Order (Mali), 2008; Grand Official, Order of Henrique the Navigator (Portugal), 2007.


The collection is arranged into ten series that are primarily organised in a chronological order. The series represent specific activities (such as fieldwork or conferences), the organisation they were created for (World Health Organisation or UNAIDS) and types of collected material (press cuttings). Piot/7-Piot/10 represents general material collected about his own media appearances or general topics relating to his work which were not specifically relate to any of his associated organisations.

Access Information

This collection is open for consultation but with some exceptions listed below. Please contact the Archivist to arrange an appointment. All researchers must complete and sign a user registration form which signifies their agreement to abide by the archive rules. All researchers are required to provide proof of identity bearing your signature (for example, a passport or debit card) when registering. Please see website for further information at . The following files are closed or have had items removed: Piot 1/2/7 and Piot/5/2/7/6 closed until 2067 and 2091 respectively; Piot 2/1/5-6 open but with items removed. Please see relevant files for details of the closure and the duration of the closure.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Peter Piot to the LSHTM archives in 2012. Further material relating to fieldwork conducted on Ebola was added to the archives in March 2014.

Archivist's Note

Compiled by Chris Olver as part of the Wellcome Trust project, Cataloguing and Preservation of the HIV/AIDS Collections at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. Sources: Who's Who; No Time to Lose: A Life in Pursuit of Deadly Viruses. Peter Piot with Ruth Marshall. (2012). W W Norton & Company.

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Archivist.

Additional Information

Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.