Regina E. Herzlinger

Nancy R. McPherson Professor of Business Administration

Regina E. Herzlinger is the Nancy R. McPherson Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School. She was the first woman to be tenured and chaired at Harvard Business School and the first to serve on a number of corporate boards. She is widely recognized for her innovative research in health care, including her early predictions of the unraveling of managed care and the rise of consumer-driven health care, a term that she coined. Money has dubbed her the “Godmother” of consumer-driven health care.

Regina E. Herzlinger is the Nancy R. McPherson Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School. She was the first woman to be tenured and chaired at Harvard Business School and the first to serve on many established and start up corporate health care /medical technology boards. All of her health care books have been best sellers in their categories, recognized for their innovative research. Money dubbed her the “Godmother” of consumer-driven health care. Her work was key to introducing consumer-driven health plans and “focused health factories”, such as centers for orthopedics, cardiology, or cancer care.  She has frequently been named as one of the 40 smartest people in healthcare by Becker’s Hospital Review and other industry journals.

She teaches two HBS MBA courses, Innovating in Health Care and Innovating Biomedical Technology, and two related Field Study courses. Based on that work, she is currently completing two text and cases books on Innovating in Health Care for the life sciences, health insurance, and health care delivery. In 2014, she launched a Harvard MOOC (Massive Open Online Course), BUS5.1x: Innovating in Health Care (IHC) https://www.edx.org/course/harvardx/harvardx-bus5-1x-innovating-health-care-1405#.UzrUO_m9md8; in 2013 , a new  HBS Executive Education program “Business Innovations in Global Health Care”; and in 2012, a continuing series of conferences, “21st-Century Health Care Management Education: Confronting Challenges for Innovation with a Modern Curriculum”. 

  1. Consumer-Driven Health Care

    Since 1999, Professor Herzlinger's work in this area has provided the major impetus for the transformation of the health care sector: first in new consumer-driven insurance products sold by established insurers such as Aetna, United and CIGNA, as well as entrepreneurial firms; and, second, in the appearance of health care focused factories. She has authored a major new book, Who Killed Health Care? (McGraw-Hill, 2007); the best-selling Market-Driven Health Care and Consumer-Driven Health Care; major journal articles; a Harvard Business School Publishing video; and a number of Wall Street Journal articles and Marketplace (NPR) editorials. Professor Herzlinger is widely quoted and interviewed on the subject.
  2. Innovating in Health Care

    Since 2001, Professor Herzlinger has written over 50 new cases and notes for this second-year MBA course on the following subjects: insurance; providers; pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, and biotechnology; medical devices sector; and health care information. She is completing the Instructors Guide for 2011 publication.
  3. Nature of Organizations

    Why do non-profit, public, and private business organizations exist? This project, begun in 2005, will became a seminar in 2007, focusing on the unique missions of these organizational forms and the resulting mechanisms for effective oversight.