The Commercialization of Knowledge Itself: Medical Publication and the
Pharmaceutical Industry

A talk by:

Professor Sergio Sismondo
Department of Philosophy, Queen’s University, Canada
Author of /An Introduction to Science & Technology Studies/

Venue:  South Wing Garwood Lecture Theatre (1st Floor, South Wing)
University College London
Date:  Wednesday 6th May, 2009
Time: 17:00 hrs

Hosted by the Department of Science & Technology Studies, UCL

Abstract:  Publication planning is the organizational and practical work
that shapes pharmaceutical companies’ data and turns it into medical
journal articles, typically written under the names of independent
medical researchers. Because the bulk of its work is hidden, publication
planning is the “ghost management” of medical research and publication.
The pharmaceutical industry’s use of the medical literature presents an
extreme case in commercialization. Medical knowledge is valued for its
contribution to marketing, and authors are valued for their legitimation
of knowledge: Markets, knowledge, and authorities are created by the