The Medical Industry Leadership Institute in the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota seeks funding to help support the fourth biennial conference of the American Society of Health Economists (ASHEcon). ASHEcon is a professional organization dedicated to promoting excellence in health economics research in the United States. Health economics has emerged as a distinct and successful field in economics, bringing theoretical insights to many issues of practical and policy significance and a large community of researchers are tackling policy-relevant issues in health behavior in health care delivery. This includes scholars in economics departments, schools of public health, public policy departments, and business schools, as well as researchers outside academia in government, industry and nonprofit organizations. Beginning with its first conference at the University of Wisconsin in 2006, ASHEcon's biennial conference has quickly become established as the premier health economics conference in the U.S., providing a forum for presenting emerging ideas, empirical results and methodological advances in health economics research, and for facilitating the development of the next generation of health economics scholars. The fourth biennial ASHEcon conference will be held June 10-13, 2012, at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minnesota with pre-conference activities at the same location on June 9. The conference will be hosted by the University of Minnesota's Medical Industry Leadership Institute. As the institution hosting this conference, University of Minnesota is requesting partial support for the conference from AHRQ. The remainder of the conference costs will be funded from other sources, including conference registration fees, sponsorships, and other grants.
The general purpose of the fourth ASHEcon biennial conference is to provide an opportunity for a large community of health economists form academia, government and industry to present research, exchange ideas, gain new skills and learn about current policy issues in the field. Anticipated outcomes include improved research through the exchange of new research findings, dissemination of cutting-edge methods and ideas, better health policies and the development of the next generation of health economics researchers. The conference provides significant time for networking and fostering collaboration among health economists. Evaluations of past ASHEcon conferences indicate high marks on all of these dimensions.