Professor Stephen Birch commenced in 2018 as Director and Taylor Family Chair of UQ’s Centre for the Business and Economics of Health.

He is also a senior scientist at the WHO Collaborating Centre on Health Workforce Planning at Dalhousie University, Canada, and also holds visiting professorial appointments at the University of Manchester, UK (since 2006) and the University of Technology, Sydney (since 2003).

Professor Birch is a pioneer in the field of health economics. He has developed and applied new methods for the economic evaluation of health care systems, with particular emphasis on equity in health care resource allocation, and needs-based approaches to health care funding and health workforce planning.

Prior to joining UQ, Professor Birch was a professor of health economics at McMaster University, Canada, for almost three decades. He has also worked at the Medical Care Research Unit, Sheffield University, UK and at the Centre for Health Economics, York University, UK. He has held honorary appointments at dental schools in Toronto and Malmo (Sweden) and the School of Public Health at Cape Town (South Africa).

Professor Birch holds a Doctor of Philosophy in economics from York University (UK), a Master of Science in fiscal studies from Bath University (UK), and a Bachelor of Arts in economics from Sheffield University.

During his career, Professor Birch has been a consultant with WHO and the World Bank, as well as serving on many national and provincial health department expert panels and advisory councils for health workforce planning in Canada and the UK. From 2015 to 2017, he served on the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences expert panel on improving access to oral health care for vulnerable people living in Canada.

Professor Birch has published more than 250 research papers with particular interests in health service and health workforce planning, access to care in underserved populations and needs-based allocation of resources and provider remuneration.

From 1997-2012, he served as Senior Editor for the leading academic journal, Social Science & Medicine. He currently serves on the editorial advisory boards of Social Science & Medicine & Health and Social Care in the Community.