Anushree Subramaniam
Anushree Subramaniam

Anushree Subramaniam, Ph.D.


Anushree Subramaniam, Ph.D. is an Economist at Intensity with expertise in health economics, applied microeconomics, economics of innovation, industrial organization, and applied econometrics.

Dr. Subramaniam’s research has generated a number of profound conclusions. In one research project, she created a new model for estimating the value of medical innovation. That model challenges the traditional value of life models that only estimate the benefits of a new treatment to individuals who fall sick ex-post, whereas her model estimates the value of a new medical innovation from an ex-ante perspective, before susceptible individuals know whether or not they will fall sick. Dr. Subramaniam’s analysis concluded that since only sick individuals participate in pharmaceutical market transactions, but a treatment is valued by all susceptible individuals, there will tend to be an under-provision of valuable innovation by the private market. In other research, Dr. Subramaniam, evaluated the wide held opinion that drugs for rare diseases (orphan drugs) do not yield high profits to manufacturers because of small patient populations. She examined the economic implications of market exclusivity and tax credits provided under the 1983 Orphan Drug Act on the innovation of drugs for rare and non-rare diseases. In that analysis, Dr. Subramaniam developed a model to estimate how pharmaceutical firms respond to public incentives when making investments in drug development. Her model predicts that incentives could push firms to cluster and obtain multiple marketing approvals in therapeutic areas where there are economies of scale and scope thus discouraging research into a large variety of rare diseases countering the desired impact of the act. Additionally, in behavioral economics research, Dr. Subramaniam developed an economic model explaining how biased beliefs about how addiction evolves can distort consumption decisions away from the optimum and cause agents to over-consume an addictive good. Ultimately, she posits that most agents underestimate how addiction levels evolve and thus believe that quitting will be easier than it actually is. Biased beliefs cause agents to fail to accurately predict their future utility thereby resulting in consumption decisions in the current period that are inefficient in the long run. Based on conclusions from the model, further insights on how to design tools for the treatment and prevention of addiction were also evaluated.

Dr. Subramaniam earned her Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago, where she specialized in health economics and applied microeconomics. Dr. Subramaniam received high honors including the Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship (2015 and 2016) and Outstanding Merit Graduate and Undergraduate Scholarships (2006 to 2015).

Dr. Subramaniam earned dual Bachelor of Science degrees at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. One in Economics, and the other in Mathematics. She also served as a researcher in MIT’s Biomaterials Science and Engineering Lab.

In addition to her work in economics, Dr. Subramaniam is an accomplished pianist and composer. She has performed internationally in Malaysia, Hong Kong, Australia and the United States, possesses perfect pitch, and was a recipient of the MIT Emerson Scholarship for music excellence.

The Team