Work address

Department of Community Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Tromsø, 9037 Tromsø, Norway. Phone + 47 4133 2054


PhD (Dr Philos), thesis: Some methodological issues in economic evaluation in health care, University of Tromsø (1994). MSc in Economic geography (1981), MA in Economics and business administration (1979),  Norwegian School of Economics (NHH).

Current positions

-Professor of health economics and health services research (since 1999), and Research Chair in the Department of Community Medicine, University of Tromsø (UiT), Norway

-Adjunct Professor (since 2010), Centre for Health Economics, Monash University, Australia

-Part time researcher (since 2011), Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Oslo

Previous positions

  • 1980-81   Research associate, Department of Social Sciences, UiT

  • 1982-85   Research associate, Department of Economics, UiT

  • 1986-98   Associate professor, Department of Economics, UiT

  • 1992-96   Adjunct Professor, Aberdeen University, Scotland

  • 2004-06   Adjunct Professor, Bocconi University, Italy

  • 2006-11   Adjunct Professor, University of Oslo, Norway


Research interests

Measurement and valuation of health outcomes; Efficiency vs equality in health and healthcare; Primary care financing and organisation; Socio-economic determinants of health; Global Health



Olsen JA: Principles in health economics and policy, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2009 Olsen JA: Helseøkonomi: Effektivitet og rettferdighet, Cappelen Akademisk Forlag, Oslo, 2006 Dolan P, Olsen JA: Distributing health care: Economic and ethical issues, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2002


Publication profile

Since PhD, 65 peer reviewed journal articles, of which two-thirds appear in scientific level 2 journals in the Norwegian CRIStin system (number of papers in brackets): Journal of Health Economics (9), Health Economics (10), Social Science & Medicine (7), PharmacoEconomics (3), Annals of Oncology (3), BMC Health Services Research (2), Frontiers in Psychology (2), Quality of Life Research (2), British Medical Journal, Addiction. The extent of my contributions in the published work is signaled by being sole author (12), first author (10), or last author (26) on most publications.

An interest in the wider subject area of health economics and policy is signified by three monographs, two of which have been published by Oxford University Press. A much expanded and revised edition of Principles in Health Economics and Policy will be out August 2017. For the Oxford Handbook of Health Economics (2011) I did the chapter on equity and fairness.


Teaching experience

Graduate courses at universities in Australia, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Norway, Russia, Tanzania, South Africa, UK.


Miscellaneous activities past five years

Three PhD candidates completed, currently main supervisor of four PhD students.

International collaborations with partners at: Monash University, Melbourne; Charité, Berlin; universities of London, Sheffield, York; SDU, Odense.

Chair of the board for the National Health Services Research Network

Editorial board member, Journal of Health Services Research and Policy, Nordic Journal of Health Economics

Regular referee for various scientific journals, research boards, PhD committes

Advisory work for various governmental health bodies  

Page administrator: Jan Abel Olsen
Last updated: 28.05.2017 15:36
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