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Lauren Olsho, Ph.D.

Principal Associate/Scientist, Health & Environment

Lauren Olsho, Ph.D. Lauren Olsho, Ph.D.
Lauren Olsho is a senior health economist and evaluator with expertise in random assignment, quasi-experimental evaluation methods, economic modeling methodology, and advanced statistical and econometric analysis.

Olsho’s primary research interests are in health, nutrition, and health behaviors in vulnerable populations – including the elderly, the poor, program participants, minorities, arrestees, and at-risk youth.

Olsho recently served as principal investigator on a cluster random assignment evaluation of the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality (AHRQ) On-Time Falls Prevention initiative, a clinical decision support intervention to reduce falls in long-term care settings.

For the USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), she has led analysis for several rigorous evaluations of nutrition interventions, including a regression discontinuity evaluation of the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, which provides free fresh fruit and vegetable snacks for children in low-income schools, and a random assignment evaluation of the Healthy Incentives Pilot, which provided a 30 percent incentive to participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for fruits and vegetable purchases using their SNAP benefits.

Prior to joining Abt, Olsho was a National Institute of Mental Health Trainee in Health and Mental Health Economics for five years, acquiring a broad base of applied knowledge and skills in health and mental health economics and policy.

Olsho also has taught an undergraduate seminar course on economics of food policy at Harvard University and serves as a statistical consultant at the University of Massachusetts-Boston.

Olsho holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Bachelors in Economics and Biology from Wesleyan University in Connecticut. 
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Expertise

  • Health economics
  • Program evaluation
  • Random assignment
  • Quasi-experimental evaluation
  • Health policy
  • Public health
  • Chronic disease
  • Nutrition
  • Long-term care
  • Risky behaviors