There are several groups of highly talented investigators throughout UPENN who have expertise in areas related to behavioral economics. Within the Wharton School, the Departments of Marketing, Operations and Information Management, Business and Public Policy, and Health Care Management all contain psychologists and economists with relevant interests and expertise (Bicchieri, Danzon, Kunreuther, Pauly, Pope, Schweitzer, Small, Stevenson, Tobacman, Waldfogel). Likewise, UPENN has great strengths in academic medicine and health-care research. Within the UPENN School of Medicine, the Division of General Internal Medicine is a leading group conducting health services research and studies of health outcomes (Armstrong, Asch, Glick, Long, Polsky, Shea, Volpp, Werner) and the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CCEB) is one of the top centers for clinical epidemiologic research, multicenter clinical trials, and biostatistical research within the U.S (Kimmel, Halpern, Troxel). The Department of Psychology contains several leading authorities in behavioral decision making (Rozin, Baron). However, despite great strengths in both behavioral economics and health, potential synergies have not been fully realized, because faculty in different departments tend to work relatively independently of one-another. Bringing them together to tackle problems that would benefit from interdisciplinary teams requires an overarching organizational structure. The primary existing institutional umbrella at UPENN for health care policy-related research is the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI) (Figure 1). LDI is a cooperative venture among Penn's Schools of Medicine, Business (Wharton), Nursing, Dental Medicine, and Communication (Annenberg) and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, with linkages to other schools, including Arts &Sciences, Education, Engineering, Social Work, and Law. LDI provides several mechanisms for convening faculty across schools, including a research seminar series, a policy speaker series, a small grants pilot program (8 grants annually, each with budgets of up to $20,000), and social functions. LDI also provides a wide range of support for medical and other health professions students who pursue joint graduate degrees in health services and policy through the management and social sciences. The Wharton School's Health Care Management Department, for example, grants an MBA in health care management and a Ph.D. in health care systems. The School of Medicine grants a Masters of Science in Health Policy Research. LDI has several special fellowships to support physicians and Other health care professionals interested in careers in health services education and research. There are also a number of programs at UPENN that support research related to aging (Figure 1). The Institute on Aging (lOA) at the University of Pennsylvania was formed in 1980 to improve the health of the elderty by increasing the quality and quantity of clinical and basic research as well as educational programs focusing on normal aging and age-related diseases at the UPENN School of Medicine and across the entire UPENN campus. Under the direction of John Trojanowski, M.D., Ph.D., this mission is implemented through a variety of elements, including funding for up to 8 pilots per year ($50,000 each), joint recruitments with School of Medicine (SOM) Departments, a Visiting Scholars Series, and an annual half-day retreat. While the lOA includes faculty from a range of disciplines and faculty members have done path-breaking work in areas like working to find treatments for Alzheimer's disease, the faculty who participate in the lOA's activities are nearty exclusively in the SOM or School of Nursing and there is no programmatic focus on economics, psychology, or behavior change interventions. The Population Aging Research Center (PARC) at UPENN was established in 1994 as a fledgling NIA P20 center. Soon after PARC was re-structured as an NIA P30 Center in 1999, Beth Soldo joined the UPENN faculty and became the Director of PARC. The PARC is primarily based in the School of Arts and Sciences. While the PARC does include faculty from the SOM, Wharton, Arts and Sciences, and Nursing, the programmatic focus is on support of secondary data analyses to promote research on the demography and economics of aging. The overall research themes of PARC are focused on biodemography;health and economics of pensions and retirement and health care systems;aging families and households, intergenerational relations, and resource transfers across multiple generations;and diversity of aging populations. PARC holds a pilot grant competition each year in which generally 6 pilots of up to $30,000 per year are funded. Thus, while there are strong groups of faculty within different departments and schools and a focus on aging research related to basic science and clinical inquiry as well as the demography and economics of aging, there has been no organizational entity focused on convening faculty across disciplines and schools with a goal of supporting research that translates insights from behavioral economics into interventions to improve health behaviors and health care delivery (see attached letters of support from Drs. Trojankowski and Soldo).
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