Lisa Robinson
Research Scientists

Lisa Robinson

Senior Research Scientist

Center for Health Decision Science

Other Positions

Deputy Director, Center for Health Decision Science

Center for Health Decision Science

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health


Lisa A. Robinson’s research and teaching focus on the conduct of benefit-cost analysis, particularly for policies with outcomes that cannot be fully valued using market measures. She has led numerous assessments of the costs, benefits, and other impacts of environmental, health, and safety policies and regulations, developed related methods, and drafted guidance documents. She co-edited the National Academies book, "Valuing Health for Regulatory Cost-Effectiveness Analysis," led the creation of guidelines for benefit-cost analysis of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services regulations and of global health interventions, and developed approaches for estimating the value of mortality risk reductions (the value per statistical life, VSL) for several government agencies and other organizations. She has explored numerous other methodological issues, including the implications of behavioral economics and happiness (subjective wellbeing) research for benefit-cost analysis, approaches for addressing the distribution of impacts across advantaged and disadvantaged groups, and the ethical concerns. She applies these methods in high-, middle-, and low-income settings. Her work addresses a variety of policy issues, including responses to vaccine mandates and to hazard warnings. She has served as a member of several expert advisory groups, including those convened by U.S. Federal government agencies, OECD, the World Health Organization, and other organizations. 

Ms. Robinson is currently Deputy Director of the Center for Health Decision Science and affiliated with the Harvard Center for Risk Analysis. She was previously a Senior Fellow at the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government as well as an Affiliate Fellow of its Regulatory Policy Program at the Harvard Kennedy School. She is a past President of the Society for Benefit-Cost Analysis and served as a Councilor of the Society for Risk Analysis as well as Chair of its Economics and Benefits Analysis Specialty Group. She is on the Editorial Boards of Risk Analysis and the Journal of Benefit-Cost Analysis.

For related publications, see:

BA, 1979, Political Science/International Relations
Carleton College, Northfield MN

MPP, 1982, Public Policy
Harvard Kennedy School, Cambridge MA

Best Paper Award, Risk Analysis2023
Risk Analysis, An International Journal

Fellow, Society for Benefit-Cost Analysis2022
Society for Benefit-Cost Analysis

Outstanding Practitioner Award, Society for Risk Analysis2021
Society for Risk Analysis

Best Symposium Award, Journal of Benefit-Cost Analysis2019
Journal of Benefit-Cost Analysis

Fellow, Society for Risk Analysis2016
Society for Risk Analysis

Richard O. Zerbe Distinguished Service Award, Society for Benefit-Cost Analysis2015
Society for Benefit-Cost Analysis

Richard J. Burk Outstanding Service Award, Society for Risk Analysis2013
Society for Risk Analysis



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