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The Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM) invites applications for a fully-funded, four-year PhD position in its Health Economics research group.

The student will conduct research on Equity-Sensitive Health Economic Evaluation as part of the Erasmus Initiative Smarter Choices for Better Health – a collaboration between ESHPM, the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) and the Department of Public Health at Erasmus Medical Center. Supervision is by Professor Owen O’Donnell (ESHPM & ESE), Professor Tom Van Ourti (ESE) and Dr Pieter van Baal (ESHPM).
Existing evaluation frameworks that support priority setting in health care aim to maximize population health. Potential trade-offs with the minimization of health inequality are ignored. This project seeks to redress this imbalance by developing and applying methods of equity-sensitive health economic evaluation. This will involve combining econometric (and modelling) methods that can identify program impact on the distribution of an outcome, and not merely its mean, with insights from welfare economics on how to assess the social welfare generated by a distribution. A second objective is to design allocation rules that an equity-sensitive decision maker can use to optimally target health care and public health interventions on groups that display heterogeneous responses. A third objective of the research is to elicit social preferences to establish the trade-offs that the general public and decision makers are prepared to make between health maximization and equalization.
Health Economics at Erasmus
ESHPM and ESE together employ one of the largest collections of health economists in Europe. Health economics research at Erasmus has been ranked 2nd in Europe and 11th in the world. The two schools jointly run a Master’s in Health Economics and have a joint health economics seminar program. At ESHPM, in addition to the Health Economics group, there are health economists in Health Systems and Insurance and Health Technology Assessment. At ESE, there is a Health Economics section within the Department of Applied Economics.
The candidate is expected to have a (research) master degree in Economics, Econometrics, or another quantitative discipline, and to have experience with statistical software and excellent communication skills in English. Preferably, the candidate is familiar with welfare economics, has experience of applied microeconometric analysis and an interest in health economics.
The appointment will be to the position of PhD candidate for a period of 4 years. The preferred starting date is September 1, 2019. In addition to conducting research, there will be some teaching duties. The student will be employed by and located in ESHPM but will be encouraged to spend some time (e.g. 1 day per week) in the Department of Applied Economics at ESE.
Qualified applicants should send by email a letter of application, curriculum vitae, and, if available, an example research paper, as well as the names and email addresses of two referees to Owen O’Donnell There is no deadline. Applications will be considered as they are received. For more information, and further details of the project, you may contact Owen O’Donnell (, Tom Van Ourti ( or Pieter van Baal (