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Institute for Health and Productivity Studies


Our projects are focused on improving the health and well-being of individuals, with a special emphasis on creating a sustained culture of health at the workplace. We are passionate about supporting employers’ efforts to create a healthy and productive workforce – and disseminating best practices on workplace health promotion and disease prevention. Employers seek guidance on how to best design, implement, and evaluate effective wellness programs. Importantly, for health promotion programs to succeed, they need to engage the organization’s leaders and workers, at all levels, to achieve a healthy company culture.

Research Methods

woman walking with diagrams in the backgroundOur evaluations generally apply quasi-experimental research designs in which program participants are compared with non-participants over time across several health, productivity and financial outcome measures.  In some studies, all employees at a given site receiving an intervention are compared to all employees at a comparison site where intervention programs are not yet made available. In others, participants and non-participants at the same site are compared.  Multivariate statistics and other econometric methods are applied to control for confounding variables and reduce self-selection bias. Evaluations of workplace programs have typically involved the aggregation and analysis of health risk assessment (HRA), biometric, medical insurance claims, absence, disability, workers’ compensation, and productivity data.

In addition to outcomes-based evaluations, IHPS has expertise in program structure and process evaluation, organizational assessment development and validation, and landscape surveillance studies.

Results are prepared in various formats, including narrative reports and PowerPoint presentations.  The IHPS team has earned a national reputation as the leader in performing objective and rigorous evaluations of health and productivity management programs.  IHPS studies are often published in peer-reviewed journals and cited as “best practice” examples of how to perform rigorous evaluation projects.


close-up view of a table in a business meetingDr. Goetzel and his team at IHPS have conducted numerous health and disease management research projects over the past several years for healthcare purchaser, managed care, government, pharmaceutical, associations/foundations, and employer clients. Projects include consultations and technical assistance to clients to support development of wellness programs, building an infrastructure for informing and applying best practices in workplace health promotion, evaluations and recommendations targeted at programs in practice among others.