Brighton Collaboration is a community aiming to promote and improve vaccine safety.

The success of vaccines brings the responsibility to ensure that immunisations remain as safe as possible, particularly since they are given to healthy individuals. Vaccines are now distributed faster and to wider populations than ever before. Reliable safety information must be available rapidly on a similar scale so that vaccine recipients and decision makers can evaluate vaccine benefits and risks accurately. We are committed to address this need. We improve health through vaccine safety and rigorous science.

Our Vision: Safe Vaccines

Safest, most effective vaccines based on rigorous science.

Our Mission: Quality Data

Enhance the science of vaccine research, by providing standardised, validated and objective methods for monitoring safety profiles and benefit to risk ratios of vaccines.

Our Strategy: Global Collaboration

Bring together committed stakeholders, protect scientific independence, facilitate knowledge transfer across different sectors, locations and profession and support vaccine safety experts.

The Collaboration Abides by the Following Principles:

Altruism – To serve the needs of the global community concerned with immunization safety.

Collaboration – To work together effectively by promoting good internal and external communications through open decision making and teamwork.

Worldwide Participation – To promote global participation.

Independence – To keep the Brighton Collaboration scientifically independent.

Multidisciplinary Approach – To involve people of different skills and backgrounds, in order to benefit and build upon their contributions.

Generalizability – To minimize bias by adhering to a strict scientific approach, ensuring broad participation and avoiding conflicts of interest.

Relevance – To maintain Brighton documents up-­to-­date by identifying and incorporating the highest achievable quality of clinical evidence.

Accessibility of Work – To facilitate access to Brighton documents through strategic alliances and choice of media.

Responsiveness –To provide high quality information by being open and responsive to criticism.

Continuity – To maintain continuity of responsibility for Brighton documents and key functions.

Accessibility – To allow broad participation in the work of the Brighton Collaboration by minimizing obstacles to contributing and promoting diversity.

Everything we do is for the purpose of providing vaccine stakeholders with the best possible information so they can make the best possible decisions. 

A scientifically valid vaccine safety profile depends on high-quality information.The entire process, from vaccine development to the actual giving of the vaccine, depends on the best possible vaccine information. The Brighton Collaboration focuses on five Scientific Priority Areas.

1. Setting Standards

Highly variable methodologies in previous vaccine studies made a valid comparison of vaccine safety profiles difficult, if not impossible. Variable case definitions of AEFI make valid quantification of rare but serious AEFI nearly impossible.

Improving Data Quality Through Harmonization

Our case definitions, guidelines and protocols intend to enhance data comparability within and across clinical trials, surveillance systems, and post-licensure clinical studies. Most of our publications can be found in the journal Vaccine or in the Academy.

2. Clinical Assessment

For individuals with adverse events following immunization (AEFI), the thorough assessment of their condition is paramount. For the responsible expert it is essential to ascertain if the event is related causally to immunization.

Improving Individual Case Management

When it comes to AEFI, rapid response is required. We leverage the community s expertise for rapid information exchange.  Thus, professionals all over the world can receive state of the art advice in short time.

3. Data Sharing 

Serious adverse events following immunization causally related to licensed vaccines are usually rare (<1:100,000). The rarity of such events makes detection and risk analysis challenging.

Improving Risk Assessment

Large data sets are required to estimate the risk of adverse events. We promote the conduct of international collaborative observational studies.

4. Public Confidence

Vaccine scares prompted by rumors have demonstrated that public mistrust may unduly derail immunization programs.

Promoting the Understanding of Public Concerns

Public concerns need to be addressed immediately. We harmonize and develop new methods for public and social media monitoring and share information about emerging rumors.

5. Capacity Building

Expertise, state of the art scientific methods and competent infrastructures have to be provided in particularly in the developing world.

Building a Network of Excellence

We enhance local vaccine safety expertise through collaborative projects and knowledge transfer.

Our Workflow of Developing Case Definitions and Complementary Guidelines

International consensus is achieved through a global network of individuals and organizations concerned with immunization safety or with associated medical and methodological aspects. The resulting accrual of expertise and the sharing of knowledge within and outside the Collaboration along with the availability of case definitions and guidelines will lead to data comparability. This will benefit vaccine recipients, scientists, health officials and healthcare providers, who need to obtain, interpret, provide, and report information on immunization safety and make scientifically sound decisions.


For each defined adverse event following immunization (AEFI) a document is developed including four sections:

  • A preamble to highlight the rationale for essential decisions made and to briefly describe the methodology of how working groups arrived at a particular Brighton document.
  • The case definition itself, which is structured in a three-level format taking into account current scientific evidence and different levels of resources available in different research and geographic settings.
  • Guidelines for data collection, analysis, and presentation of a given AEFI.
  • References for selected points discussed in the preamble.
Step-By-Step: Developing Case Definitions and Complementary Guidelines

Selection of Topic

AEFI Prioritization

Based on severity, frequency  of reporting, enhanced public interest and emerging scientific needs.

Working Groups

Call for Volunteers


Composition of Groups

Announcement on our website, contacting of pertinent scientific authors and request for referrals.

Based on the balanced composition of professional expertise and geographical location.

Exploratory Review




Systematic  search and compilation  of relevant published and unpublished    evidence.

Evaluation  of inventory through discussions by the Working Group.

Draft Definition


A draft document is developed based on the exploratory
review and group consensus.

Reference Group

Call for Reviewers

Announcement on our website, contacting of pertinent scientific authors and request for referrals.

Peer Review




An online survey guides structured review of the draft document  to  stimulate critical  review.

Survey data are compiled and discussed by the Working Group.





The draft is revised based on Reference Group comments.

The final document is harmonized with other case definition documents.


Cyclical Revision

Case definition documents are revised in 3-5 year intervals or upon the availability of new scientific information or critical feedback from evaluation and implementation of documents.
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