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Who We Are

The Economic Evaluation Research Group (EERG) at the University of Georgia establishes an infrastructure to conduct economic evaluations, quantitative and qualitative analyses of health policies, chronic disease decision modeling, and evaluations of public health interventions and programs. The Group brings together a multi-disciplinary team of experts to provide the methods necessary to conduct research relevant for informing health policy making in the state and nationally.

What Do We Do

The primary purpose of EERG at UGA is to produce four main products: economic evaluations, health policy analyses, chronic disease decision modeling, and public health program evaluations. These assessments and evaluations focus primarily on local- and state-level policies and programs to provide timely and important information for policy and other decision makers in the state of Georgia. Additionally, assessments and evaluations by EERG focus on important national policies and programs. Thus, EERG can play an important role in advocating for the improvement of population-level health at the local, state, and national levels. The secondary purpose of the EERG is to provide linkages of key faculty and staff with expertise to conduct economic evaluations, quantitative and qualitative health policy analysis, chronic disease decision modeling, and public health program evaluation for the purposes of obtaining research funding to produce scholarly outputs that will ultimately improve population-level health.


Janani Rajbhandari-Thapa, PhD
Dr. Janani Rajbhandari-Thapa, EERG director is an Assistant Professor and an Applied Economist in the Department of Health Policy and Management, University of Georgia College of Public Health. Her research is on program and policy evaluation using multiple sources of data (survey, experimental, claims, administrative). Her research primarily focuses on obesity and related chronic diseases.

Phaedra Corso, PhD
Dr. Phaedra Corso, Senior Advisor to the EERG is Vice President for Research at Kennesaw State University. Dr. Corso is the founder of the Economic Evaluation Research Group and previously worked as UGA Foundation Professor of Human Health. She also worked for 15 years at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as an economic analyst and is co-editor of Prevention Effectiveness: A Guide to Decision Analysis and Economic Evaluation, a primer on conducting economic evaluations in public health (Oxford University Press, 2003).

Justin Ingels, MPH, PhD
Justin Ingels is the EERG’s Research Director and assistant research professor in the College’s Department of Health Policy and Management. He holds a master’s degree in public health from the University of Georgia and received training in economic evaluation methods from Dr. Corso. He currently serves as the Research Director for the EERG and is responsible for the design of data collection instruments, management of the collection protocols, and data analysis. Justin is concurrently pursuing a doctoral degree in Epidemiology from the UGA’s CPH.

How Can You Contact Us?

Economic Evaluation Research Group
Department of Health Policy and Management
College of Public Health
University of Georgia
Wright Hall
100 Foster Road, Health Sciences Campus
Athens, GA 30602