Diane Alexander


Assistant Professor of Health Care Management

Colonial Penn Center


Ph.D., Economics, Princeton University, 2016

Diane Alexander is an Assistant Professor of Health Care Management at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research is predominantly in health care, studying the economics of the provision of health care services and the actions of health care providers. More broadly, she is also interested in the interactions between environmental policies and health, as well as between health care and education. Her work has been featured in media outlets including the Washington Post, Bloomberg, CityLab, Vox, and Scientific American, as well as podcasts such as Freakonomics radio and Vox’s The Weeds.

She has studied the roles played by new types of providers in health care delivery, focusing on retail and urgent care clinics; the role of nurse practitioners and physician assistants in access and health; and how payment incentives influence physician decision-making. In a strand of work focusing on the interaction of environment and place on health outcomes, she has studied the role of residential segregation in explaining persistent racial health disparities, and the effect of pollution on health, utilizing the excess diesel emissions from the Volkswagen emissions cheating scandal as a natural experiment.

Prior to joining Wharton, Alexander was an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. She received a B.A. in economics from the University of California at Berkeley and a Ph.D. in economics from Princeton University.

Research Themes