The Society for Benefit-Cost Analysis (SBCA) honored CHDS faculty James K. Hammitt with its highest award, the Outstanding Achievement Award, in March, 2021. Hammitt has published over 180 peer-reviewed articles that have substantially influenced the theory and practice of benefit-cost analysis. His work clarifies and further develops the underlying theory and concepts and applies quantitative methods to assess the impacts of health and environmental policies. He has made major contributions to the literature on valuing changes in mortality and morbidity risks. In accepting the award, Hammitt discussed the similarities and differences between the value per statistical life (VSL) and the value per statistical life year (VSLY). These values often determine the extent to which policies yield positive net benefits yet are frequently misunderstood. Hammitt is one of the most highly cited authors in SBCA’s Journal of Benefit-Cost Analysis. He was previously a member of the SBCA Board of Directors and currently serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Benefit-Cost Analysis.
The award is given annually to an individual who makes significant contributions to the field of benefit-cost analysis. It was announced at the SBCA March 2021 Annual Conference, in which many CHDS affiliates participated. CHDS Deputy Director Lisa A. Robinson is an SBCA Past-President and aided in organizing the conference as Vice-Chair of the Program Committee. She also presented work on valuing COVID-19 morbidity risk reductions. Dr. Hammitt presented work on valuing COVID-19 mortality risk reductions and on applying prioritarian social welfare functions. Other CHDS participants included Stephen Resch, who presented work on willingness to pay for improved dental health, and Michael Eber, who presented work on the effects of fact boxes on cancer screening.
Learn more: Visit the SBCA website
Learn more: Explore the Resource Pack: Introduction to Benefit-Cost Analysis
Learn more: Explore the Resource Pack: Valuing Health and Longevity in BCA
Learn more: Explore the Resource Pack: BCA in Low- and Middle-Income Countries