From Products to Functionings: New Medicinal Drugs in Developing Countries

  • Jeffrey James
  • Haider A. Khan
  • P. Parthasarathi


Set partly in the context of the debate about the economic impact of multinationals on developing countries, numerous attempts have been made to study the welfare effects of new products on the inhabitants of those countries. For the most part, these studies are based on a form of analysis (developed primarily by Lancaster) that focuses on the specific characteristics embodied in new products.1 Those combinations of characteristics are then evaluated from the point of view of their appropriateness to household groups differentiated, most frequently, by levels of income. Because they are mainly produced in developed countries, new products, so the argument usually runs, contain a high proportion of ‘high-income’ characteristics that make them unconducive to the satisfaction of basic needs in developing countries. Or, put another way, the conclusion is typically that new products tend to confer their benefits disproportionately on rich rather than poor consumers in developing countries.


Drug Product Drug Consumption Welfare Effect Health Functionings Drug Usage 
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Copyright information

© Jeffrey James and Haider A. Khan 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeffrey James
    • 1
  • Haider A. Khan
    • 2
  • P. Parthasarathi
  1. 1.Tilburg UniversityThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Graduate School of International StudiesUniversity of DenverDenverUSA

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