International Institute of Social Studies

The International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) is an international Post-Graduate School of policy-oriented, social science teaching and research that is part of the Erasmus University Rotterdam. The diverse activities include teaching, interdisciplinary research and advisory work in the field of development studies. Health related research at ISS focuses on health service delivery in developing counties, public administration, equity in health and health care, effectiveness of health financing mechanisms and cost effectiveness of development health programmes.


Robert Sparrow (
Dr. Sparrow is a lecturer in development economics with particular expertise in social policy evaluation. He obtained his PhD in 2006, on the impact of social safety net interventions in health and education during the crisis in Indonesia. Regarding health care in Asia, he has worked extensively in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, both for policy advisory work and academic research. 

Arjun Singh Bedi (
Professor Bedi is professor in quantitative economics. He received a BA degree in Economics Honors from St. Stephen's College, Delhi University in 1991 and earned a Masters (1992) and Phd in Economics (1996) from Tulane University in New Orleans. Before coming to the ISS he held positions at the University of Bonn (1998-99) and Columbia University (1996-98). His research interests lie in development economics and human resource economics.

Selected publications:

Bedi, A.S., S. Srinivasan (2007) ‘Domestic Violence and Dowry: Evidence from a South Indian Village’, World Development 35(5), pp. 857-880.

Bedi, A.S., S. Srinivasan (2008) ‘Daughter Elimination in Tamil Nadu, India: A Tale of Two Ratios’, Journal of Development Studies 44(7), pp. 961-990.

Lanjouw, P., M. Pradhan, F. Saadah, H. Sayed and R. Sparrow (2002) ‘Poverty, Education and Health in Indonesia: Who Benefits from Public Spending?’, in Morrisson, C. (ed.), Education and Health Expenditures, and Development: The cases of Indonesia and Peru, Development Centre Studies, OECD Development Centre, Paris, 2002, pp. 17-78.

Pradhan, M., F. Saadah, R. Sparrow (2007) ‘Did the Health Card Program Ensure Access to Medical Care for the Poor during Indonesia’s Economic Crisis?’, World Bank Economic Review 21(1), pp. 125-150.

Sparrow, R. (2008) ‘Targeting the Poor in Times of Crisis: The Indonesian Health Card’, Health Policy and Planning 23(3), pp. 188-199.  

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