Liisa T. Laine

I am a LDI HSR Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Leonard Davis Institute and the Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the Perelman School of Medicine, and LDI Associate Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania. I completed my PhD in Economics at the University of Jyväskylä (Finland) in 2019.

My main research interests concern efficiency and incentives in health care provision. I use two methodological approaches in my research. First, I specialize in causal inference using quasi-experimental methods that I have used to study, for instance, the effects of health information technology and the market-level effects of school choice. Second, I develop theoretical industrial organization models to study questions related to the effects of health care competition on health care prices and qualities, and the optimal design of provider payment schemes.

Before joining LDI and the Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the Perelman School of Medicine at University of Pennsylvania, I held visiting positions at the CHOICE Institute at University of Washington (2017-2018) and the economics department at Columbia University (2015-2017) and Boston University (2012-2015).

Research Interests

Industrial Organization, Applied Microeconomics, Health Economics, Game Theory.

Curriculum Vitae

Email lainel [at]


“Quality and Competition between Public and Private Firms,” Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Vol. 140, 336 − 353, 2017. (with Ching-to Albert Ma) [Paper]

We study a multistage, quality-then-price game between a public firm and a private firm. The market consists of a set of consumers who have different quality valuations. The public firm aims to maximize social surplus, whereas the private firm maximizes profit. In the first stage, both firms simultaneously choose qualities. In the second stage, both firms simultaneously choose prices. Consumers' quality valuations are drawn from a general distribution. Each firms unit production cost is an increasing and convex function of quality. There are multiple equilibria. In some, the public firm chooses a low quality, and the private firm chooses a high quality. In others, the opposite is true. We characterize subgame-perfect equilibria. Equilibrium qualities are often inefficient, but under some conditions on consumer valuation distribution, equilibrium qualities are first best. Various policy implications are drawn.

Working Papers

“Multi-Dimensional Product Differentiation in a Mixed Oligopoly” (submitted, R&R)

“Health Care Provider Entry and Quality Competition under Regulated Payments and Inaccurate Quality Perceptions” (submitted)

“Persistent and Transitory Overweight and Long-Term Labor Market Outcomes,” with Ari Hyytinen (submitted)

“Information Technology, Access, and Overuse of Prescription Drugs", with Petri Böckerman, Mika Kortelainen, Mikko Nurminen, and Tanja Saxell (submitted) [Paper]

Work in Progress

“Market-Level Effects of a Large-Scale Public School Choice Reform”, with Isa Kuosmanen and Mika Kortelainen

“Choice and Competition in Public Special Healthcare”, with Mika Kortelainen and Tanja Saxell

Mailing address

Leonard Davis Institute

University of Pennsylvania

3641 Locust Walk, 308 CPC

Philadelphia, PA 19104-6218


Department of Medical Ethics & Health Policy, Division of Health Policy

University of Pennsylvania

423 Guardian Drive, 1003

Philadelphia, PA 19104-6021


+1-(215)-746-8602 and +1-(215)-743-9670


lainel [at]