Darius Lakdawalla Appointed to the Quintiles Chair in Pharmaceutical Development and Regulatory Innovation

Portrait of Dr. Darius LakdawallaSchool of Pharmacy Dean R. Pete Vanderveen has named Darius Lakdawalla as the inaugural holder of the Quintiles Chair in Pharmaceutical Development and Regulatory Innovation.

The Quintiles Chair was established in 2011 with the express purpose of recruiting a world-class expert with the interdisciplinary knowledge of both health economics and regulatory policy. The Chair provides leadership in scholarship and research at the intersection of these two disciplines, contributing to the ultimate shaping of the future of health care.

“After a comprehensive national search and the evaluation of a slate of impressive candidates, the committee found Dr. Lakdawalla to have the qualifications and the vision to hold this important chair,” says Vanderveen. “He is uniquely experienced in both health economics and regulatory policy which will allow him to lead our work that will ultimately promote innovation in health.”

“I am excited to work at the intersection of two critical areas in health policy, and at the intersection of two dynamic schools at USC,” says Lakdawalla. “The collaboration between the School of Pharmacy and the Price School places USC at the forefront of innovative health policy research.”

Lakdawalla joined USC in 2009 when the university established the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, a collaboration between the School of Pharmacy and the Price School of Public Policy. Lakdawalla initially came to USC as a professor at the Price School of Public Policy and now assumes a primary appointment at the School of Pharmacy with a joint appointment at the Price School. The School of Pharmacy also houses the USC International Center for Regulatory Science which will interface with Lakdawalla in his new role at the School.

The Quintiles Chair allows USC to proactively address the shift in the regulatory environment for biopharmaceutical products in today’s global marketplace. The Chair supports focused research on identifying potential efficiencies that facilitate the arrival of products to market in cost effective way while ensuring safety and the crumbling of stumbling blocks in the system which prevent the utilization of these efficiencies.

Lakdawalla’s research primarily studies the economics of risk to health, medical innovation and the organization of health care markets. His work looks at how patients, health care providers and health care firms behave, and the resulting implications of that behavior for public policy. For example, he has looked at the broad social consequences of health insurance for innovation and well-being, the decision making of firms assessing when and whether to pursue the development of a risky new medical technology, how health care providers cope with the risk of medical errors and malpractice and a variety of other topics in health policy and innovation.

Lakdawalla’s work focuses on understanding the long-term consequences of health policy and regulation for medical innovation and for future generations of patients. His work has investigated intellectual property and marketing in the pharmaceutical industry, regulatory exclusivity for drug makers, the design of incentives for medical innovation, the long-term impact of pharmaceutical price regulation and the appropriate role of physician and drug maker liability in the health care system.

His work has been referenced by the Congressional Budget Office and has been published in leading journals of economics, medicine and policy, including Health Affairs, Medical Care, Journal of Public Economics, New England Journal of Medicine, Archives of Internal Medicine, among others.

Lakdawalla is currently a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and an associate editor at the Review of Economics and Statistics. He is a recipient of the Milken Institute’s Distinguished Economic Research Award and the Garfield Prize for research on the economics of medical innovation.

Lakdawalla received his PhD in economics from the University of Chicago and his BS in mathematics and philosophy from Amherst College. His appointment to the School of Pharmacy is effective immediately.

In addition to the Quintiles Chair in Pharmaceutical Development and Regulatory Innovation, Quintiles also supports the Quintiles International Lecture Series, also housed at the USC Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics.