Anupam B. Jena

The profound difference between seeing and looking

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About Anupam B. Jena

Physician economist Anupam B. Jena advances the understanding of what works and what does not work in health care by using “natural experiments” and big data. He studies phenomena such as the economics of physician behavior and the physician workforce, health care productivity, and the economics of medical innovation. Anupam is the Ruth L. Newhouse Associate Professor of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School, an internist at Massachusetts General Hospital, and a Faculty Research Fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research. Anupam is the 2007 recipient of the Eugene Garfield Award by Research America for his work demonstrating the economic value of medical innovation in HIV/AIDS. In 2013, he was the first social scientist to win the NIH Director’s Early Independence Award. His research and editorials have been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Freakonomics, and NPR. He is also co-host of the podcast, Tradeoffs, which aims to make sense of the complicated, costly, and often counterintuitive world of health care.

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About This Talk

Some say ‘seeing is believing’. Yet, Creative Investigator Anupam B. Jena argues that “seeing is not the same thing as looking”. Anupam believes that health care insights exist all around us, but we miss them because we are not trained to ask the correct questions. Why are there more fatalities on marathon days? Are kids born in August more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD? Do people drive faster after a Fast and Furious movie comes out? By asking creative questions about health, science, and economics on a broad scale, we can observe "natural experiments" that occur in plain sight. If those "natural experiments," are measured and analyzed, they reveal insights that could guide systems level innovation across health care.

Learn how to unlock the "natural experiments" that exist in the world around you by watching Anupam’s TEDMED 2020 Talk, “The profound difference between seeing and looking".

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