Children in developing countries continue to be susceptible to infectious and non-infectious disorders that lead to growth retardation, cognitive impairment and high infant and childhood mortality. Clinical, epidemiologic and pathogenetic studies are providing opportunities to intervene against these disorders as never before. In this issue, international experts in child health offer their perspectives on the problems of greatest import to the health of children growing up in impoverished environments. Opportunities for research and intervention are particularly emphasized. Articles are specifically devoted to the following topics: Child Health and Survival in a Changing World; Childhood Nutrition and Growth; Children with Disabilities in the Developing Nations; The Burden of Enteropathy and Subclinical Infections; Malaria in Children; The Unholy Trinity: Nematode Infections in Developing Countries; The Burden and Etiology of Diarrheal Illness in Developing Countries; Intestinal Protozoal Infections; Pneumonia and Respiratory Infections; Primary Bacteremia and Meningitis in Developing Countries; Neonatal and Perinatal Infections; HIV in Developing Countries; and Tuberculosis in Children.