Research students

The following is an alphabetical list of students from (or affiliated with) the Department of Social Policy, researching Health Policy issues.

Aris Angelis

Research topic: Biomedical innovation: Multiple criteria decision analysis for value assessment of new medical technologies and policies to incentivise socially desirable R&D investments.
Supervisors: Dr Panos Kanavos and Professor Alistair McGuire
Research interests: Pharmaceutical economics and policy, value based pricing, biomedical R&D process and incentives for innovation, Health Technology Assessment, patient reported outcomes, personalised medicine, life sciences investments, sustainability of health care systems.
Personal information: Born and raised in Athens, Greece, Aris is a PhD student and a research associate at the Medical Technology Research Group, in LSE Health. He holds an MSc in International Health Policy-Health Economics from LSE and also an MSc in Biopharmacy from King's College London. Aris completed his undergraduate studies in Biochemistry at Imperial College in 2007. Previous work includes intern roles with Novartis, working in the market access Department, and in the regulatory affairs evaluation division of the Greek National Organization for Medicine in Athens.
More information: Medical Technology Research Group website|
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Jon Cylus

Research topic: Economic Downturns and unemployment benefits: Do generous benefits have a protective effect for health?
Primary Supervisor: Professor Alistair McGuire
Research interests:  My research generally focuses on measuring health system performance (efficiency, coverage, access) and the effects of economic downturns on health and health care systems.
More information: I am a Research Fellow/Technical Officer at the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies|, based at LSE Health. 
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Alessandra Ferrario

Research topic:  Managing entry and uptake of new high-cost medicines: The European experience
Supervisors: Dr Panos Kanavos, Professor Alistair McGuire
Research interests:  Access to medicines, managed entry agreements/risk sharing agreements, non-communicable diseases (NCDs), global health
Personal information: Alessandra Ferrario| is a Research Officer and a PhD candidate at the London School of Economics. Her research focuses on access to medicines and non-communicable diseases. Alessandra’s PhD is investigating the impact of managed entry agreements on cost-effectiveness, use and expenditure of new medicines. One of her current research projects investigates the burden and management of diabetes, both from a health and economic perspective, as part of a multi-country study in low- and middle-income countries. As part of her work on access to medicines, Alessandra is working with the World Health Organization on issues around availability, affordability and rational use of medicines in the Republic of Moldova. She holds an MSc in Health Policy, Planning and Financing (LSE/LSHTM), MSc in Epidemiology (Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, University of Basel) and BSc in Molecular Biology (University of Basel).
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Philipp Hessel

Research topic: 'Active Ageing' in European Welfare States
Supervisors: Professor Mike Murphy
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Sam Keeping

Research topic: Regulation of risk in health and social care: a comparative analysis of England and Scotland
Supervisor/s: Professor Elias Mossialos, Professor Alistair McGuire
Research interests: Assessment and surveillance of hospital performance, incentive payments in primary and secondary care, risk perception and communication, particularly with regards to vaccination, and risks associated with complementary and alternative medicine.
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Victoria de Menil

Research topic: Non-state actors in Kenya’s mental healthcare: capacity, access and economic impact
Description: What are private providers contributing to the mental healthcare system in Kenya? We know that in the formal sector alone, half of all healthcare in Kenya is privately provided, but the literature tells us nothing about what private providers do in mental health. Victoria’s thesis analyses three different datasets to shed light onto three areas of private mental healthcare: 1) the formal for-profit sector, exemplified by a commercial psychiatric hospital in Nairobi; 2) the formal not-for-profit sector, as seen in the rural work of the charity BasicNeeds; and 3) the informal for-profit sector, characterized by the services of traditional and, increasingly, faith healers. The emphasis is on economic outcomes, such as cost and cost-effectiveness, where such data is available.
Victoria holds a master’s in global health from Harvard, where she published her dissertation on the use of antipsychotics in a 1,000-bed institution for intellectual disability. Prior to joining the LSE, she worked for four years at BasicNeeds. A list of Victoria’s publications can be found here|.
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Sherry Merkur

Research topic: Risk perceptions and health-related behaviour.
Description: Why do people make lifestyle choices that they know have the potential to negatively affect their health? Sherry's PhD research aims to address this question by looking specifically at individuals' perceptions of health-related risks and how these relate to their behavioural choices. Until recently, the field of risk and health has been thought of from an epidemiological and public health perspective. Sherry's research examines this area from a unique perspective which bridges several disciplines, namely behavioural economics, economic psychology and social policy. This is a new and exciting area of research that uses the methods initially developed in studying the risk perceptions of environmental hazards and applies them to health-related lifestyle behaviours, including obesity, smoking and using illicit drugs.
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Philipa Mladovsky

Research topic: Financing health care in developing countries: the role of community health insurance.
Description: Community health insurance (CHI) is an increasingly popular health financing policy in low-income countries, though to date, its success has been limited. Underpinning much of the analysis and development of CHI policy by international organisations is an economic conceptual framework. Philipa's PhD will explore the repercussions of employing this model, arguing that it does not permit the systematic incorporation of social context, values, goals and power relations into policy analysis and development. Other complementary models will be sought and developed to explain successes and failures in CHI policy in the course of the PhD, with a particular focus on social capital theory. Philipa's PhD will focus on a country which has a relatively long tradition of CHI - Senegal.
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Chantal Morel

Research topic: Access to medicines.
Description: A study into medicine price dynamics across countries and through time.
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Elena Nicod

Research topic: Health technology assessments and efficiency in healthcare resource allocation: how well does this mechanism really work?
Supervisors: Dr Panos Kanavos, Professor Paul Dolan
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Christina Novinskey

Research topic: Intergovernmental Politics, Policy and Power: A Study of Healthcare Decentralization in Spain.
Supervisor: Professor Elias Mossialos
Research interests: Christina is researching health care decentralization policy and the particular affects it has had on intergovernmental relations in Spain. In general, she is interested in health care systems research, health care decentralization and other organizational and management policies, health care financing and tropical diseases in both more- and less-developed countries. She is pursuing her PhD through the LSE Health and Social Care.
Personal Information: Christina Novinskey is American, and currently living in Madrid, Spain. She holds a Master of Philosophy in Social (Health) Policy from the LSE, a Master of Arts in Contemporary European Studies from the University of Bath and a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts from Kalamazoo College. She has been a visiting student at over 7 universities and institutes worldwide, including the Harvard School of Public Health, The Juan March Institute and the University of Carlos III in Madrid and the University of Siena, Italy. Since May 2003, Christina has worked as an independent health policy consultant for international organizations such as the Inter-American Development Bank, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Pan-American Health Organization and the WHO European Observatory for Health Systems and Policies.
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Corinna Sorenson

Research topic: Global institutional design: Networked governance in global health
Description: Due to the supraterritorial nature of many health issues and the perceived failure of traditional governance institutions (e.g., nation states, intergovernmental organizations) to address such transboundary interdependency problems, new modes of governance at the global level have emerged. This research will focus on the role of multi-sectoral policy networks ('networked governance') in global health governance, using the Global Fund as a case study. Employing a socio-political theoretical and empirical framework, this research aims to explore complex issues around 1) legitimacy and authority, 2) power and participation, 2) processes of governance, and 4) expansive ideational conceptions pertaining to global ethics, equity, and citizenship. Corinna holds a Master of Public Health and a Master of Health Services Administration, with emphases in health policy and health economics, from the University of Michigan School of Public Health. Prior to joining LSE, she served in several senior-level health policy research and consulting positions for the US Food and Drug Administration, Lewin Group, Stanford University, and University of Michigan Health System.
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Matthew Townsend

Research topic: The impact of different approaches to pay-for-performance on health care integration
Supervisor/s: Prof Alistair McGuire, Dr Irene Papanicolas
Research interests: Matthew is examining whether the introduction of quality-based financial incentives may facilitate more integrated and patient-centred models of care in Canada and England. Additional research interests include: the economics of health care, health insurance, performance incentives, economic evaluation, governance and clinical quality.
Personal information: Matthew is a Canadian national based at LSE Health. Prior to pursuing his PhD, he worked on several projects related to hospital and community funding reform as a Senior Consultant and Policy Advisor at the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care in Ontario. Matthew is a former fellow in the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Strategic Training Program in Public Health Policy. He holds degrees from the University of Melbourne (BA), University of Trinity College (BSc) and School of Public Policy and Governance (MPP) at the University of Toronto. He recently completed an MSc in Health Economics, Policy and Management at the LSE.
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Olivier Wouters

Research topic: Essays on issues of availability, affordability, and cost containment in off-patent pharmaceutical markets.
Supervisor(s): Dr Panos Kanavos, Professor Alistair McGuire
Research interests: Pharmaceutical economics and policy, namely pricing, reimbursement, and access to medicines.
Personal Information: Olivier has previously worked at the World Health Organization, the Swedish Institute for Communicable Disease Control, and RTI International. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and a Master’s degree in International Health Policy (Health Economics) from the LSE.
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