Curbing Misconduct in the Pharmaceutical Industry: Insights from Behavioral Ethics and the Behavioral Approach to Law

24 Pages Posted: 24 May 2013

See all articles by Yuval Feldman

Yuval Feldman

Bar-Ilan University - Faculty of Law

Rebecca Gauthier

Harvard Law School

Troy Schuler

Harvard Law School

Date Written: May 23, 2013

Abstract

Two insights of psychology on which we would like to draw are that people react to law in more complex ways than rational-choice models assume and that good people sometimes do bad things. With that starting point, this article provides a behavioral perspective on some of the factors that policymakers seeking to reduce the level of misconduct in the pharmaceutical industry should consider. Effective regulation and enforcement need to address the following questions: Who are the regulation’s targeted actors — researchers or executives? Are the regulations directed toward research or marketing activities? Is the misconduct a product of explicit rational choice or implicit processes of which the actor is unaware? Is it reasonable to address all types of misconduct using the same approach? Certain misconduct — particularly by researchers — is due to automatic, intuitive, and unconscious decisions and needs to be addressed through different means than those used to address misconduct due to controlled, deliberate decisions. This article therefore recommends using different sorts of regulation depending on the context. It suggests more tailored enforcement mechanisms that will be sensitive to the pharmaceutical researchers’ unique work motivations and to their awareness or lack of awareness of their own misconduct.

Keywords: Behavioral Ethics, Pharma, Corruption, Science

JEL Classification: H32, I10, K32, L15

Suggested Citation

Feldman, Yuval and Gauthier, Rebecca and Schuler, Troy, Curbing Misconduct in the Pharmaceutical Industry: Insights from Behavioral Ethics and the Behavioral Approach to Law (May 23, 2013). American Journal of Law and Medicine, Vol. 14, No. 3, 2013 (Forthcoming), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2269461 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2269461

Yuval Feldman (Contact Author)

Bar-Ilan University - Faculty of Law ( email )

Faculty of Law
Ramat Gan, 52900
Israel

Rebecca Gauthier

Harvard Law School ( email )

1563 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Troy Schuler

Harvard Law School ( email )

1563 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
377
Abstract Views
3,258
Rank
150,528
PlumX Metrics