Ashish Jha headshot

ON SEPTEMBER 1, 2020, the Brown University School of Public Health will welcome its third dean, Dr. Ashish K. Jha, M.D., MPH, succeeding Bess Marcus, Ph.D. who will conclude her term as dean to return to full-time research and teaching as a member of the Brown faculty.

Dr. Jha is an accomplished physician, health policy researcher and global health advocate, who is currently the faculty director of the Harvard Global Health Institute. Jha’s research focuses on improving the quality of health care systems with a specialized focus on how national policies impact care. He has led some of the seminal work comparing the performance of the U.S. health system to those of other high-income countries to better understand
why the U.S. spends more but often achieves less in population health. He has published more than 200 empirical papers and writes regularly about ways to improve health care systems, both in the U.S. and globally. In addition to his academic appointments at Harvard, he served in a number of roles at the federal level, including as special assistant to the secretary in the Department of Veterans Affairs from 2009 to 2013. Jha was elected as a member of the National Academy of Medicine in 2013.

Jha will lead Brown’s School of Public Health as it continues to build national influence in impacting urgent health challenges and improving equity in health care through its research and teaching. Jha said that the potential to build on the School of Public Health’s strengths and work with students, faculty and staff to position it as a leading public health school born in and built for the health challenges of the 21st century is exciting, especially in the context of Brown’s collaborative academic culture. And Brown’s track record of partnership with health care leaders and agencies in Rhode Island — through the School of Public Health, the Warren Alpert Medical School and other academic departments — is another essential factor in ensuring the role of public health educators and researchers in fulfilling the University’s mission, Jha added.

As dean, Jha will report directly to Provost Richard Locke and serve as a member of the Provost’s Senior Academic Deans committee and of the President’s Cabinet.