Money Changes Everything (Still More Evidence)

Do you still believe the fairy tale that payments by a product’s manufacturer to a scientist (even the most well-meaning, independent-thinking scientist) do not inevitably influence that scientist’s interpretation of the technical data on product’s risks and benefits? If so, this will change your mind.

Comments

  1. #1 JMG3Y
    November 25, 2007

    For an understanding of the science of influence, take a look at the research of Dr. Robert B. Cialdini, Regents’ professor of psychology and marketing at Arizona State University. In particular, read one of his two books, Influence: Science and Practice or Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. I found the first one so counter to the concept that we human beings are capable of making unbiased choices by rationally evaluating empirical evidence that I had to set it aside for awhile.

    His wikipedia entry is a good place to start: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Cialdini

    His work complements that on framing by George Lakoff and others.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Lakoff

    Cognitive bias abounds.
    http://www.overcomingbias.com/

    What is most interesting is that in the face of the above, we the public seem to expect that politicians are not adversely influenced by lobbysits or the continuing need to raise campaign funds but that our physicians are adversely influenced by the medical world equivalents.

  2. #2 Kim
    November 27, 2007

    Very interesting. Thanks for sharing this article. What an eye opener. This should go to D.C. More corruption at the expense of patients, it should be illegal for drug companies to do this period!