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Sociology Research


Dr Olga Löblová is a political scientist working on health policy. She is currently a Wellcome Research Fellow at the Department of Sociology, researching regulatory retrenchment in pharmaceutical reimbursement decision-making. She was awarded a Wellcome Trust Fellowship in Humanities and Social Science in August 2020 to research pharmaceutical policy with the project "Alternative access schemes for pharmaceuticals: bypassing scrutiny?".

Olga's research focuses on the political economy of resource allocation in health care and the role of experts and evidence in health policy-making. She studies how the varying institutional contexts, diverse configurations of actors’ interests and expertise, as well as different forms of evidence, determine which health technologies and interventions are publicly funded in today’s health systems. Specifically, she researches the politics of health technology assessment (HTA) in health care reimbursement decisions. She uses mainly qualitative methods in her research: in the past years, she carried out over 140 in-depth interviews in the United Kingdom, France, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and in Brussels. Her work has been published e.g. in Policy Studies Journal; Social Science & Medicine; Comparative European Politics; and Health Policy. See her Google Scholar profile for full list of publications.

Olga holds a PhD from Central European University (2016; Public Policy track) and MA degrees from the College of Europe (2010) and Sciences Po Paris (2009).

Olga previously worked in the department on Dr Stuart Hogarth’s CancerScreen project, where she has studied the regulation of molecular diagnostics and governance of cancer screening. In 2019-2020, she held a Borysiewicz Biomedical Sciences Fellowship in parallel to her postdoc which funded her study of “shadow expertise” in COVID-19 decision-making. She has been involved in teaching on the MPhil in Sociology and on the Human, Social and Political Sciences (HSPS) Tripos. Prior to joining Cambridge she was a visiting assistant professor at the School of Public Policy, Central European University, a visiting lecturer at Sciences Po Paris, collège universitaire de Dijon (2014-2016), and a visiting professor at College of Europe, Bruges, where she developed and taught a workshop in professional development in European Health, Consumer and Risk Policy (2015, 2016, 2021). She also has past experience as a consultant in European and global health policy, and in Brussels pharmaceutical lobbying.

Research Interests

health policy; regulation; politics of health care reimbursement decisions; health technology assessment; diagnostics

Research Projects

Key Publications - Book Chapters

O. Löblová, J. Rone and E. Borbáth. Forthcoming. “COVID-19 in Central and Eastern Europe”, in Scott L. Greer, Elizabeth J. King, Andre Peralta Santos, Elize Massard da Fonseca: Coronavirus Politics. The Comparative Politics and Policy of COVID-19. University of Michigan Press, 2021-22

Michał Zabdyr-Jamróz, O. Löblová, A. D. Moise and I. Kowalska-Bobko. Forthcoming. "Is the Polish ‘Law and Justice’ (PiS) a Typical Populist Radical Right Party? A Health Policy Perspective", in Populist Radical Right and Health: National Policies and Global Trends, eds Michelle Falkenbach and Scott L. Greer, Springer 2021.

Alexandru D. Moise, G. Scheiring and O. Löblová. Forthcoming. "Populist Radical Right and Health in Hungary", in Populist Radical Right and Health: National Policies and Global Trends, eds Michelle Falkenbach and Scott L. Greer, Springer 2021.

Greer, Scott L. and O. Löblová. 2020. “EU networks after Brexit”, in Europe after Brexit, eds. Scott L. Greer and Janet Laible, MUP

Rusu, Alexandru & O. Löblová. 2019. “Policy transfer and epistemic communities: is failure the end of the story?”, in Public Policy Circulation: Arenas, Agents and Actions, eds. Christopher Walker & Tom Baker. Edward Elgar

Baker, Tom, et al. 2019. “Prospects for policy circulation studies: Towards engaged pluralism?”, in in Public Policy Circulation: Arenas, Agents and Actions, eds. Christopher Walker & Tom Baker. Edward Elgar

Key Publications - Journal Articles

Hogarth, Stuart, and O. Löblová. (2020). “Regulatory niches: diagnostic reform as a process of fragmented expansion. Evidence from the UK 1990-2018”. Social Science and Medicine. 

Miller, Fiona, S. Hogarth, S. Sturdy et al. 2020. “Half a Century of Wilson & Jungner: Reflections on the Governance of Population Screening.” Wellcome Open Research, 5:158

Löblová, O., T. Trayanov, M. Csanádi, P. Ozierański. 2020. “The emerging social science literature on health technology assessment: a narrative review”. Value in Health, 23(1), 3-9

Csanádi, M., O. Löblová, P. Ozierański, A. Harsányi, Z. Kaló, M. McKee, and L. King. 2019. “When Health Technology Assessment Is Confidential and Experts Have No Power: The Case of Hungary.” Health Economics, Policy and Law 14 (2), 162-181.

Löblová O., M. Csanádi, P. Ozierański, Z. Kaló, L. King, and M. McKee. 2019. “Patterns of Alternative Access: unpacking the Slovak extraordinary drug reimbursement regime 2012-2016”. Health Policy. 

Löblová O., M. Csanádi, P. Ozierański, Z. Kaló, L. King, and M. McKee. 2019. “Alternative access schemes for pharmaceuticals in Europe: Towards an emerging typology”. Health Policy 123 (7), 630-634.

Csanádi, M., P. Ozierański, O. Löblová, L. King, Z. Kaló, L. Botz. 2019. “Shedding light on the HTA consultancy market: Insights from Poland”. Health Policy 123 (12), 1237-1243

Löblová, Olga. 2018. “Epistemic communities and experts in health policy-making”. European Journal of Public Health 28 (suppl_3):7-10.

Löblová, Olga (2017) "What has health technology assessment ever done for us?" Journal of Health Services Research & Policy

Löblová, Olga (2017) "When Epistemic Communities Fail: Exploring the Mechanism of Policy Influence". Policy Studies Journal 10.1111/psj.12213.

Rotar, A.M., A. Preda, O. Löblová, V. Benkovic, S. Zawodnik, L. Gulacsi, M. Niewada, et al. 2018. “Rationalizing the Introduction and Use of Pharmaceutical Products: The Role of Managed Entry Agreements in Central and Eastern European Countries.” Health Policy.

Ferrario, A., D. Arāja, T. Bochenek, T. Čatić, D. Dankó, M. Dimitrova, J. Fürst, et al. 2017. “The Implementation of Managed Entry Agreements in Central and Eastern Europe: Findings and Implications.” PharmacoEconomics.

Löblová, O. (2016) “Three Worlds of Health Technology Assessment: explaining patterns of diffusion of HTA agencies in Europe.” Health Economics, Policy and Law 11, no. 3 (2016): 253 - 273

Baji, Petra, Márta Péntek, Imre Boncz, Valentin Brodszky, Olga Loblova, Nóra Brodszky, and László Gulácsi. 2015. “The Impact of the Recession on Health Care Expenditure — How Does the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia Compare to Other OECD Countries?Society and Economy 37 (1):73–88.

Gulácsi, László, Alexandru M. Rotar, Maciej Niewada, Olga Löblová, Fanni Rencz, Guenka Petrova, Imre Boncz, and Niek S. Klazinga (2014). "Health technology assessment in Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria." The European Journal of Health Economics 15, no. 1 (2014): 13-25.

Key Publications - Other

Löblová, Olga, J. Rone, E. Borbath. “Coronavirus: why central and eastern European countries seem to be running out of luck”. The Conversation, 18 September 2020. Republished by

The Czech Republic’s Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic (April and May updates)”. Health Economics, Policy and Law blog series: Country Responses to the Covid19 Pandemic. Cambridge Core blog.

Löblová, Olga. “Coronavirus: what went wrong in the Czech Republic?”. The Conversation, 9 November 2020.

Grants and Projects

Olga Löblová, International Visegrad Fund scholarship, 2014/15, 2013/14


Additional Information

Media appearances in English:

Financial Times: "Central Europe struggles in second Covid surge after earlier success", 4 October 2020

Financial Times: “How central and eastern Europe contained coronavirus”, 30 April 2020 “3 European countries are about to lift their lockdowns”, 10 April 2020


Additional Information

Since 2018, Olga has been actively involved in a not-for-profit association of Czech scientists working abroad, Czexpats in Science 

Job Title:
Wellcome Research Fellow, Robinson College