Open Source Drug Development

Check out this article also from The Economist regarding a possible open-source approach to developing drugs. It is my belief that regarding peaceful technology development, the first best social optimum for informational goods always involves openness. In order to acheive that first best optimum though a payment method must be well established which properly compensates informational creators according to the degree of social welfare improvement that information generates. I believe this can be nearly acheived through broad-based compulsory licensing with a feedback mechanism. If I do not find a good paper that has already been written on the subject I will likely write one.

Another major related issue has to do with drug testing. While I have a great deal of research left to do on this subject, it is my contention that there are gross inefficiencies in the field of drug experimentation caused by both the proprietary nature of the drug manufacturing information, but also the unnecessary regulations present in the field of human use and testing. An open-source pharma model combined with the compusory licencing and feedback (in this case, detailed public statistical feedback of subjects) and thirdly a free-market in human subjects, provided an informed consent environment, with subject’s compensation also coming from the compulsory licencing fee would, I believe, maximise the social welfare in all time periods. I plan to write a paper on this subject as well as soon as I get the time.

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