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Centre for Health Economics and Policy Analysis
Julia Abelson

Julia Abelson

Professor, Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact (HEI)
Director, Health Policy PhD program


T: (905) 525-9140, ext. 22128

McMaster University
CRL Building, 2nd Floor, Room 203
1280 Main Street West,
Hamilton, ON
L8S 4K1

Julia Abelson is a professor in the Department of Health Evidence and Impact, and an associate member of the Department of Political Science. She was director of CHEPA from 2006-2011, and is a past recipient of a Canadian Institutes of Health Research New Investigator award, and an Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Career Scientist award. She is also the director of McMaster's Health Policy PhD program. Abelson obtained her M.Sc. in Health Policy and Management from the Harvard School of Public Health and her doctorate in social and policy sciences at the University of Bath, U.K. Her research interests include public engagement in health system governance; the analysis of the determinants of health policy decision-making; and the evaluation of innovations in the organization, funding and delivery of health services. Through her research, education and service activities, Abelson works closely with decision-makers in provincial, regional and local governments.


  • public engagement methods and evaluation
  • values in health policy analysis
  • politics of health policy


Abelson J, Wagner F, DeJean D, Boesveld S, Gauvin F-P, Bean S, Axler R, Petersen S, Baidoobonso S, Pron G, Giacomini M and Lavis J. Public and Patient Involvement in HTA: Framework for Action. International Journal of Technology Assessment in Health Care, 32:4 2016; doi:10.1017/S0266462316000362

Montesanti S, Abelson J, Lavis J and Dunn J. Enabling the participation of marginalized populations: case studies from a health service organization in Canada. Health Promotion International. 2016; doi: 10.1093/heapro/dav118

Abelson J, Wilson G, Li K, Shields K, Schneider C, Boesveld S. Supporting quality public and patient engagement in health system organizations: Development and usability testing of the Public and Patient Engagement Evaluation Tool (PPEET). Health Expectations. doi: 10.1111/hex.12378.

Li K, Abelson J, Contandriopoulos D, Giacomini M. Conceptualizing the use of public involvement in health policy decision-making. Social Science and Medicine. May 23, 2015. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2015.05.023.

Abelson J, Bombard Y, Gauvin F-P, Simeonov D and Boesveld S. Assessing the impacts of citizen deliberations on the HTA process. International Journal of Health Technology Assessment in Health Care. December 2012.

Bombard Y, Abelson J, Simeonov D, Gauvin F-P. Eliciting ethical and social values in health technology assessment: A participatory approach. Social Science and Medicine, 2011; 73(1): 135-144.

Abelson J, Miller FA, Giacomini M. What does it mean to trust a health system? A qualitative study of Canadian health care values. Health Policy, 2009 June; 91(1): 63-70.

Abelson J, Forest P-G, Eyles J, Casebeer A, Martin E, Mackean G and the Effective Public Consultation Project Team. Examining the Role of Context in the Implementation of a Deliberative Public Participation Experiment: Results from a Canadian Comparative Study. Social Science and Medicine, 2007; 64: 2115-2128.

Abelson J, Giacomini M, Lehoux P. Bringing ‘The Public’ into Health Technology Assessment and Coverage Policy Decisions: From Principles to Practice. Health Policy, 2007; 82:37-50.

Abelson J, Forest P-G, Eyles J, Smith P, Martin E, Gauvin F-P. Deliberations about deliberative methods: Issues in the design and evaluation of public consultation processes. Social Science and Medicine, 2003; 57: 239-251.


  • health policy analysis
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