The Value of Biodiversity in Pharmaceutical Research with Differentiated Products
Biologists and conservation advocates have expressed grave concern over perceived threats to biological diversity. ``Biodiversity prospecting'' – the search among naturally occurring organisms for new products of agricultural, industrial, and, particularly, pharmaceutical value – has been advanced as both a mechanism and a motive for conserving biological diversity. Economists and others have attempted to estimate the value of biodiversity for use in new pharmaceutical project research. In this paper we apply a new approach to estimating values: we employ two models of competition among differentiated products. Each model confirms previous findings that the value to private researchers of the ``marginal species'' is likely to be small. The models can have very different implications with respect to social values, however. These findings underscore the need for a better understanding of the true meaning of diversity. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001
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Volume (Year): 18 (2001)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
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