Prof. Øverland leads a team of researchers analysing burden of disease and risk factors at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. Formerly, he was a specialist director for research and health analysis in mental health and addictions with responsibilities in policy work.
He is an adjunct professor at the University of Bergen, teaching research methods, epidemiology and public health for professional students and PhD-candidates. Formerly, he was a responsible for a community psychology program, development of curriculum and a practice module.
His main research interests are population health, mental health epidemiology and general public health, in particular related to consequences and burden of disease in terms of work ability, unemployment and sickness absence, mortality, care and co-morbidities, interventions and policy to reduce such burden. Further strings of research has focussed on sleep disorder and its consequences, and health behaviours such as tobacco use and physical activity. Broad practical experience in research designs spanning from clinical trials, various epidemiological methods and observational data designs, systematic literature reviews, and substantial experience in registry-based research and data linkages. Pending research funding applications relate to data quality improvement and foundations for new research spanning from municipal-level data to global health.