Digital Public Defence: Dimitrios Gouglas

MSc Dimitrios Gouglas at Institute of Health and Society will be defending the thesis “Prioritization models for vaccine development against emerging infections” for the degree of PhD (Philosophiae Doctor).

Image may contain: Clothing, Forehead, Beard, Jaw, Facial hair.

Photo: Elite Foto - CC Vest. 

The public defence will be held as a video conference over Zoom.

The defence will follow regular procedure as far as possible, hence it will be open to the public and the audience can ask ex auditorio questions when invited to do so.

Click here to participate in the public defence

Download Zoom here

Due to copyright reasons, an electronic copy of the thesis must be ordered from the faculty. In order for the faculty to have time to process the order, it must be received by the faculty no later than 2 days prior to the public defence. Orders received later than 2 days before the defence will not be processed. Inquiries regarding the thesis after the public defence must be addressed to the candidate.

Digital Trial Lecture – time and place

See Digital Trial Lecture.

Adjudication committee

  • First opponent: Professor Gavin Yamey, Duke University
  • Second opponent: Senior Research Fellow Praveen Thokala, The University of Sheffield
  • Third member and chair of the evaluation committee: Associate Professor Eline Aas, University of Oslo

Chair of the Defence

Associate Professor, Eli Feiring, University of Oslo

Principal Supervisor

Executive Director Trygve Ottersen, Norwegian Institute of Public Health


Vaccine development is essential in efforts to avert and respond to emerging epidemics. The dissertation develops and applies a framework for prioritizing investments in vaccine development against emerging infectious diseases in global funding organizations. The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovations (CEPI) is used as a case study. The purpose is to develop prioritization models that consistently link the organization's strategic goals with vaccine development investment decisions under uncertainty and stakeholder heterogeneity.

The analysis uses a combination of stakeholder engagement and preference elicitation techniques to identify appropriate strategic objectives in the case organization. A simulation-optimization model is used to estimate the optimal level of investment required to develop vaccines against 11 priority diseases. Multi-criteria decision analysis and operations research methods are employed to support the optimal selection of vaccine development projects for investment against various emerging infectious diseases.

There are three key findings in the dissertation. First, the dissertation provides new empirical evidence on emerging infectious disease vaccine development objectives, costs, risks and preferences for investment. Second, the dissertation demonstrates how prioritization models can be developed that are suitable for different investment decision contexts, but which at the same time remain consistent with the organization's overarching strategic goals. Third, the dissertation illustrates how this framework can be applied to support investment decisions in real-life settings, adapting models to practical limitations while maintaining consistency with theoretical foundations.

These findings are important as new global governance structures for contingency and response, such as CEPI, are still in the making. For such organizations, the framework developed in this dissertation can contribute to better decisions for global health.

Additional information

Contact the research support staff.

Published Jan. 10, 2022 9:33 AM - Last modified Jan. 19, 2022 10:48 AM