The Harvard University Program in Ethics & Health, The University of Geneva Institute for Biomedical Ethics & The Brocher Foundation are pleased to invite you to the Brocher Summer Academy public lecture

Measuring Health Inequality and Health Inequity
Sir Tony Atkinson
(London School of Economics & Nuffield College, Oxford)


Thursday 15 July 2010 from 17.15 to 18.45
Brocher Centre, 471 Rte d’Hermance, 1248 Hermance, Geneva, Switzerland
(The lecture will be followed by a cocktail reception)


Health inequalities are at the forefront of public debate in many countries, including the United States and the European Union. Governments have in recent years set in place programmes to tackle health inequalities. However, the current economic and fiscal crisis is threatening progressive health policies. The aim of this Lecture is to show how a deeper understanding of the issues of measuring inequality helps us develop appropriate policy responses.

Among the questions that will be addressed by Sir Tony Atkinson during the lecture are notably:

What is "health inequity"?

Is the widely used Human Development Index an appropriate indicator for measuring health?

How far will emphasis on "productivity" drive out concerns about health inequalities?

If the health sector itself is "ring-fenced", will this mean that government spending cuts fall on health-related transfers, such as disability and careers’ benefits?

This public lecture is part of the Brocher Summer Academy in Global Population Health that will bring together during one week 25 professors and 25 enrollees with the aim of introducing researchers, practitioners, and graduate students to population-level bioethics.

Sir Tony Atkinson is Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics and Fellow of Nuffield College, Oxford. He was previously Warden of the College. He is Fellow of the British Academy, and has been President of the Royal Economic Society, of the Econometric Society, of the European Economic Association and of the International Economic Association. He is an Honorary Member of the American Economic Association. He has served on the Royal Commission on the Distribution of Income and Wealth, the Pension Law Review Committee, and the Commission on Social Justice. He has been a member of the Conseil d’Analyse Economique, advising the French Prime Minister. He is a Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur.

He is author of Unequal Shares, The Economics of Inequality, Lectures on Public Economics (with J.E. Stiglitz), Poverty and Social Security, Public Economics in Action, Incomes and the Welfare State, Poverty in Europe, The Economic Consequences of Rolling Back the Welfare State, and Social Indicators: The EU and Social Inclusion (with B Cantillon, E Marlier and B Nolan), and The Changing Distribution of Earnings in OECD Countries. He has published articles in, among other scientific journals, the Review of Economic Studies, the Journal of Economic Theory, the Quarterly Journal of Economics, the Economic Journal, and the Scandinavian Journal of Economics, and the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. He was the editor of the Journal of Public Economics for 25 years.

Seats are limited

Please confirm your participation to by Tuesday 6 July


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