The economics of drug abuse: A quantitative assessment of drug demand

Steven R. Hursh, Chad M. Galuska, Gail Winger, James H. Woods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


Behavioral economic concepts have proven useful for an overall understanding of the regulation of behavior by environmental commodities and complements a pharmacological perspective on drug abuse in several ways. First, a quantitative assessment of drug demand, equated in terms of drug potency, allows meaningful comparisons to be made among drug reinforcers within and across pharmacological classes. Second, behavioral economics provides a conceptual framework for understanding key factors, both pharmacological and environmental, that contribute to reductions in consumption of illicit drugs. Finally, behavioral economics provides a basis for generalization from laboratory and clinical studies to the developmentof novel behavioral and pharmacological therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20-28
Number of pages9
JournalMol Interv
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2005
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacy


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