Newcastle Clinical Trials Unit

Staff Profile

Professor Luke Vale

Professor of Health Economics


I am a researcher with an international reputation in economic evaluation and health technology assessment and have contributed significantly to the growth in the use of systematic reviews and economic modelling in this field. This expertise is built on nearly 30 years of health economics experience. I am currently a Professor of Health Economics, a post previously funded by the Health Foundation, where I lead the Health Economics Group. I also work closely with the Evidence Synthesis Group and was instrumental in originally setting up that group.

I am  Director of the IHR funded Newcastle Technology Assessment Review Centre and a collaborator and health economics lead on the NICE funded Newcastle External Assessment Centre. In addition to this role I am theme lead for the Enabling Methodologies Theme of the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration, Senior methodologist for the NIHR Newcastle In Vitro Diagnostics Co-operative and lead health economist for the NIHR Behavioural Science Policy Research Unit.

Previously, I was the Director or the NIHR Research Design Service (RDS) for the North East and North Cumbria (NENC) and I remain as a senior member of the RDS NENC. Until 2023 I was co-ordinating editor of the NIHR funded Cochrane Incontinence Review Group and following reorganisation of Cochrane I remain as a sign-off editor. , which is also funded by NIHR. I was also Chair from 2010 to 2020 of the joint economic methods group of the international Cochrane and Campbell Collaborations ( which develops the methods and conducts systematic reviews of interventions in health care and other policy areas; I am still actively developing methodology in this area. 

I have considerable managerial and supervisory experience including most recently as the Deputy Director of the Institute of Health & Society (until 2019). I also have a proven record in attracting research funds, completing projects to a high standard and in a timely fashion. I have extensive links with policy makers and researchers throughout the UK and internationally and was economic advisor the recent Topol review on digital medicine. The total value of competitive peer reviewed funding I have been awarded is in excess £165 million including a substantial number as Principal Investigator. In addition, I have a strong publication record with well over 400 papers in peer-reviewed journals, 4 books, 15 book chapters and over 100 other significant reports.

Key research interests are:

  • Economic evaluation as part of randomised controlled trials and Health Technology Assessments for national and international agencies
  • Use of economic evaluation techniques in the design of complex interventions and health technologies
  • Development of methods for the incorporation of discrete choice experiments and willingness to pay estimates into economic evaluation
  • Identification and exploration of methods to improve the efficiency of economic evaluation research.

Area of expertise

  • Health economics
  • Health technology assessment
  • Economic evaluation

I would be interested to hear from prospective PhD students if they have research interests in any of these areas.

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