Applying the three core concepts of economic evaluation in health to education in the UK

Posted on 12 November 2019

CHE's latest Research Paper 170 written by Sebastian Hinde, Simon Walker, Hugues Lortie-Forgues

CHERP 170

In a UK policy context, education and healthcare sectors share many characteristics; however, the role of economic evaluation in informing policy making is very different. While in health it has become a key part of the deliberative processes of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in their recommendations to the NHS, it has not played the same role in education. In this article we explore three key components that are required to underpin robust evaluations: a clear perspective, the identification of a single maximand, and recognition of the opportunity costs. We demonstrate the importance of each, how it has been applied in the NICE framework, and how it may be implemented in a UK education setting. We conclude that the failure in education to address the three components has reduced the ability to consider the cost-effectiveness of funding decisions, potentially resulting in inefficient use of educational funding.

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