Scientific Director: Prof. Martin Karlsson

Demographic change presents some major challenges for Western health systems and brings with it a series of far-reaching changes. Responding to these changes requires that the social security systems have sustainable and resilient funding structures in place. Efforts to create precisely these structures have resulted in the most recent past in the increasing use of elements of competition in the German health care system. Analysis of these elements, and of the effects and consequences associated with them, is the central focus and substance of research at CINCH.

CINCH explores the impact of competitive structures on actors in the health system from different perspectives. An important criterion in assessing that impact is the efficiency with which resources are used. Competitive structures not only affect the allocation of resources, they also have certain implications for distribution. It is not always possible to separate efficiency and equitable distribution from each other completely, and there is often a conflict between the objectives of these two criteria. These issues are analysed at CINCH using empirical-econometric and experimental methods. By combining these two methods, CINCH is able to deliver solid, evidence-based policy advice. The experimental method and thematic focus are key unique features of CINCH, the only centre for health economics with expertise in experimental research in Germany.

Work on health economics issues has been ongoing at the University of Duisburg-Essen since 2012 in collaboration with the partners from the RWI – Leibniz Institute for Economic Research and the Düsseldorf Institute of Competition Economics (DICE). Research at CINCH under its director Prof. Dr. Martin Karlsson is conducted in seven project groups by a total of 39 project leaders and researchers. The groups are supported by seven associate members and a visiting professor from England. Between 2012 and 2016, 121 articles were published in 75 peer-reviewed journals and more than five million euros won in competitive research funds (e.g. DFG, EIB, Leibniz Association).