Seminar: Empirical Health Economics

Course content

The purpose of the course is to train the students’ abilities to understand health as an economic concept and carry out empirical analyses on health (micro) data using relevant econometric techniques. The default is that students use the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe ( to carry out the empirical projects. However, student can also conduct analyses on data they find themselves.


Generally, the topics are bounded to empirical strategies that can be pursued within the SHARE database. These include inequalities in health, risk behaviors, measurement of health, retirement in Europe, Ageing, health policies and aspects of COVID19 in Europe. For further inspiration students are encouraged to view the long list of publications carried out on SHARE data.


A central part of the course will be to apply methods on real data, specifically SHARE. Therefore, the students will be obliged to meet data access requirements laid out by SHARE SHARE has made the survey ”easySHARE” available for teaching purposes.


If students have an alternative and appropriate micro dataset set up by the beginning of the course, they can use it instead of SHARE. In that case, the student should contact the teacher by the course start, in order to determine the data’s relevance. However, the scope must be within the field of health economics.


MSc programme in Economics

The seminar is primarily for students at the MSc of Economics

Learning outcome

After completing the seminar the student is expected to be able to fulfill the learning outcome specified in the Master curriculum and to be able to:


  • Explain central health economic concepts related to micro behaviour
  • Reflect on the counterfactual problem in health econometric applications
  • Reflect on underlying assumptions for these models


  • be able to choose among econometric models for different applications and argue for the choice
  • formulate testable research questions related to casual relations in health economics
  • assess not only the advantages of different techniques, but also their pitfalls
  • be able to write clearly about data, econometric analyses and results
  • interpret empirical results within a health economic framework


  • Professionally, being able to understand empirical strategies of health economists

At the seminar the student is trained independently to
- identify and clarify a problem,
- seek and select relevant literatur,
- write a academic paper,
- present and discuss own paper with the other students at the seminar.

Mandatory activities in the seminar:
- Kick-off meeting
- Finding literatur and defining the project
- Writing process of the seminar paper
- Presentation of own project and paper
- Giving constructive feedback to another student´s paper
- Actively participating in discussions at the presentations and other meetings.

The aim of the presentations is, that you use the presentation as an opportunity to practice oral skills and to receive feedback at the paper. The presentations are not a part of the exam and will not be assessed.

The seminar project paper must be uploaded in Absalon before the presentations, as the opponents and the other seminar participants have to read and comment on the paper. It is important that you upload a paper that is so finalized as possible due to the fact that the value of feedback and comments at the presentation is strongly associated with the skill level of the seminar paper.
The teacher defines what materials may be used for the presentations.

After the presentations, you can with a few corrections improve the seminar paper by including the feedback and comments emerged during the presentations. It is NOT intended that you rewrite or begin the writing of the seminar paper after the presentation has taken place.

In case of a pandemic like Corona the teaching in this seminar may be changed to be taught either fully or partly online. For further information, see the course room on Absalon.

  • Health Economics, Jay Bhattacharya, Timothy Hyde and Peter Tu. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Introductory Econometrics: A modern Approach, Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, South-Western
  • Strongly encouraged to use “Mostly Harmless econometrics”, Joshua Angrist and Jörn-Steffen Pischke, Princeton University Press

Econometrics at BA level.

BSc in Economics or similar

Schedule Fall 2021:

- Kick-off meeting:
September 6th 9-11 + sept 10th 9-11

- Extra meetings / introductory teaching / guidance:
29 October 10-14: Poster session – presentation and feedback on preliminary projects. Posters must be sent to course leader 25 october at 10 am.

- Deadline for submission of commitment paper / project description: 1 October.

- Deadline for uploading a seminar assignment paper in Absalon: One week prior to presentation. Presentation slots will be allocated on kick-off meetings.

- Presentations in the time period 1 – 21 November:
12. November 8-12 (and 12-15 if many participants)
19. November 8-12 (and 12-15 if many participants)

- Exam date: 1 December at 10.00 (am) - latest uploading of Seminar paper to the Digital Exam portal for assessment.

All information regarding the seminar is communicated through Absalon including venue. So it is very important that you by yourself logon to Absalon and read the information already when you are registered at the seminar.

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written examination
A seminar paper in English that meets the formal requirements for written papers stated in the curriculum and at KUNet for seminars.
All aids allowed

for the seminar paper.

The teacher defines the aids that must be used for the presentations.


Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

Students are assessed on the extent to which they master the learning outcome for the seminar and can make use of the knowledge, skills and competencies listed in the learning outcomes in the Curriculum of the Master programme.


To receive the top grade, the student must with no or only a few minor weaknesses be able to demonstrate an excellent performance displaying a high level of command of all aspects of the relevant material.

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Project work
  • 186
  • Seminar
  • 20
  • English
  • 206


Course number
7,5 ECTS
Programme level
Full Degree Master

1 semester

and venue:
Go to "Remarks"

Exam and re-sits: Go to "Exam"
1 class of 20 students
Department of Economics, Study Council
Contracting department
  • Department of Economics
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Social Sciences
Course Coordinator
  • Torben Heien Nielsen   (3-7c7076486d6b777636737d366c73)

Torben Heien Nielsen

Saved on the 28-04-2021

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