The Social and Economic Value of Health An innovative research programme to investigate the impact of health on society and the economy

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  • The Social and Economic Value of Health programme aims to develop knowledge around the impact of health on the social and economic outcomes of individuals and populations through funding original research.
  • £3.2 million have been awarded across ten projects to support innovative research about health’s contribution to society and the economy.
  • There have been two rounds of this programme so far: the 2017 round focused on the impact of individuals’ health on their social and economic outcomes, while the 2019 round is focusing on the health of populations in a place.

Social and Economic Value of Health research programme 2019

Aims

This round of the programme aims to understand the extent to which the health of a population (physical and/or mental) shapes the social and economic outcomes of that population.

The programme will help to develop understanding of the contribution that the overall level and distribution of wellbeing and health among the population in a geographical area makes to the social and economic prosperity of that place.

The outcomes of this programme should help to:

  • build knowledge of the relationship between a given population’s health and the health of individuals within that population
  • establish the definitions and metrics needed to examine the relationship between the health of a population in a place and the social and economic outcomes of that place.

We are funding four projects with awards between £250,000 and £350,000 for a maximum duration of two years.

Find out more about this round of the programme. 

Explore the projects

Research project

Children’s places: how they can shape health and influence social and economic outcomes

Project by Imperial College London that aims to understand how the health of secondary school...

Research project

Health of Older People in Places (HOPE)

A research project focusing on whether the proportion of older individuals in a place with good...

Research project

Novel methods to explore the value of cognitive health in a place

A research project by a team at University College London exploring the relationship between...

Research project

The health of places and the health and outcomes of individuals in those places

A research project by a team at the University of Manchester investigating the extent to which the...

Social and Economic Value of Health research programme 2017

Aims

This round of the programme aimed to generate new knowledge and expand our understanding of the impact that a person’s physical and/or mental health has on their own economic and social outcomes over the medium to long term.

The projects have been developing our understanding of the economic and social case for investing in strategies that maintain, protect and create health more broadly than through investment in health care. They seek to reframe health as an asset that can potentially deliver wider economic and social returns on investment. The projects are building evidence on the causal impacts of health, mainly by using date linkage and statistical methods, to better understand the effect of health status on social and economic outcomes.

All six projects will be completed in 2020/21.

Explore the projects

Research project

Social and economic consequences of health status

Led by the University of Bristol, this project will use causal inference methods to assess how...

Research project

Life course impacts of health status on social and economic outcomes and transitions

This project will identify and analyse longitudinal data in order to establish and measure the...

Research project

The causal impact of health status on labour market outcomes: consequences for individuals and households

This project will use econometric techniques to provide new UK evidence on the relationships between...

Research project

The economic and social value of health from childhood to later life

This project aims to generate new knowledge and expand understanding of the impact that a person’s...

Research project

Causal effects of alcohol and mental health problems on employment outcomes: Harnessing UK Biobank and linked administrative data

This project will assess the causal effects of alcohol consumption and depression on social and...

Research project

Does childhood obesity hinder human capital development?

This project aims to establish the causal pathways that link childhood obesity to human capital...

Further reading

Briefing

The nation's health as an asset

November 2018

A briefing that asks: what is the social and economic value of maintaining and improving people's...

Blog

Building the evidence around the social and economic value of health

30 April 2018

We know a lot about the impact of the social and economic determinants on people’s health. However,...

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