Jillian Clare Kohler

Director, WHO Collaborating Centre for Governance, Transparency & Accountability in the Pharmaceutical Sector

The Political Economy of International and Domestic Pharmaceutical Policy Issues

Jillian Clare Kohler, PhD is a Professor at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, the Dalla Lana School of Public Health and the Munk School of Global Affairs. She is also Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Governance, Transparency and Accountability in the Pharmaceutical Sector.  Her professional background includes in-house pharmaceutical policy work at Unicef, the World Bank, and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), where she did field work in a range of countries including Brazil, Bulgaria, Haiti, and Romania.

Dr Kohler's research is focused on fair access to essential medicines with a particular focus on good governance and intellectual property rights. She pioneered the methodology on good governance in the pharmaceutical system for the World Bank, which was subsequently adopted by the WHO and has been applied in over 35 countries globally.

She is the author of over 100 policy papers, journal articles and book chapters on pharmaceutical policy and is a co-editor of The Power of Pills: Social, Ethical and Legal Issues in Drug Development, Marketing and Pricing Policies (2006) and Access to Medicines as a Human Right: Implications for Pharmaceutical Industry Responsibility (2012).

Dr Kohler is a technical adviser for the Access to Medicines Index and WHO Good Governance for Medicines Programme. She was a Peter and Patricia Gruber Fellowship in Global Justice at Yale University in 2013. She earned her B.A. and an M.A. in Political Science from McGill University and a Ph.D. in Politics from New York University.

Selected Publications:

Vian T, Kohler JC, Forte G, Dimancesco D. "Promoting transparency, accountability,and access through a multi-stakeholderinitiative: lessons from the medicinestransparency alliance". Journal of Pharmaceutical Policy and Practice (2017) 10:18 DOI 10.1186/s40545-017-0106-x

Thorsteinsdóttir H, Ovtcharenko N,  Kohler JC. "Corporate social responsibility to improve access to medicines: the case of Brazil". Globalization and Health 2017 13:10; DOI: 10.1186/s12992-017-0235-7

Moscou K, Kohler JC, McGahan A. “Governance and pharmacovigilance in Brazil: a scoping review”. Journal of Pharmaceutical Policy and Practice 2016, 9:3

Romain S, Kohler JC, Young K. “Policy versus practice: a community-based qualitative study of the realities of pharmacy services in Nunavut, Canada”. Journal of Pharmaceutical Policy and Practice 2015, 8:22
Kohler JC, Mitsakakis N, Saadat F, Byng D, Martinez MG. "
Does Pharmaceutical Pricing Transparency Matter? Examining Brazil’s Public Procurement System". Globalization and Health 2015, 11:34

Kohler JC, Martinez MG. "Participatory health councils and good governance: healthy democracy in Brazil?". International Journal for Equity in Health 2015, 14:21.

Mackey TK, Eysenbach G, Liang BA, Kohler JC, Geissbuhler A, Attaran A. "A call for a moratorium on the health generic top-level domain: preventing the commercialization and exclusive control of online health information". Globalization and Health 2014, 10:62 [PDF]

Moscou K, Kohler JC, Lexchin J. "Drug Safety and Corporate Governance". Global Health Governance, Fall 2013, Volume VII, No.1 (pp. 56-79) [PDF]

Mackey TK, Liang AB, Kohler JC, Attaran A. "Health Domains for Sale: The Need for Global Health Internet Governance". Journal of Medical Internet Research. 2014, 16(3):e62. [PDF]

Kohler JC, Mackey TK, Ovtcharenko N. "Why the MDGs need good governance in pharmaceutical systems to promote global health". Kohler et al. BMC Public Health. 2014, 14:63

Gabble R, Kohler JC. “To patent or not to patent? the case of Novartis’ cancer drug Glivec in India”. Globalization and Health. 2014,10:3.

Phillips K, Kohler JC, Pennefather P, Thorsteinsdottir H, Wong J. "Canada’s Neglected Tropical Disease Research Network: Who’s in the Core — Who’s on the Periphery?". PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. 2013, 7(12): e2568.

Kohler JC, Makady A. “Harnessing Global Health Diplomacy to Curb Corruption in Health” Journal of Health Diplomacy, 2013, 1(1).

Gauvreau CL, Ungar WJ, Kohler JC, Zlotkin S. "The Use of Cost-Effectiveness Analysis for Pediatric Immunization in Developing Countries". The Milbank Quarterly, Vol. 90, No. 4, 2012 (pp. 762–790).

Kohler JC, Pavignani E, Michael M, Ovtcharenko N, Murru M, Hill PS.
"An examination of pharmaceutical systems in severely disrupted countries". BMC International Health and Human Rights, forthcoming.
Fukada C, Kohler JC, Boon H, Austin Z, and Krahn M. “Prescribing gabapentin off label: Perspectives from psychiatry, pain and neurology specialists.” Canadian Pharmacists Journal, Nov/Dec 2012. Vol 245 No 6.
Attaran A, Barry D, Basheer S, Bate R, Benton D, Chauvin J, Garrett L, Kickbusch I, Kohler JC, Midha K, Newton PN, Nishtar S, Orhii P, and McKee M.  “How to Achieve International Action on Falsified and Substandard Medicines: A Consensus Statement”. British Medical Journal 2012; 345:e7381

Wilson KR, Kohler JC, Ovtcharenko N. The make or buy debate: Considering the limitations of domestic production in Tanzania. Globalization and Health 2012, 8:20. Published: 29 June 2012.

Bouchard M, Kohler JC, Orbinski J, Howard A.  Corruption in the health care sector: A barrier to access of orthopaedic care and medical devices in Uganda. BMC International Health and Human Rights 2012, 12:5

Esmail LC, Kohler JC. The politics behind the implementation of the WTO Paragraph 6 Decision in Canada to increase global drug access. Globalization and Health 2012, 8:7 (3 April 2012) [Abstract] [PDF]

Lexchin J, and Kohler JC. The danger of imperfect regulation: OxyContin use in the United States and Canada. International Journal of Risk & Safety in Medicine 23 (2011) 233–240 (PDF)

Lee M, Kohler JC. "Benchmarking and Transparency: Incentives for the Pharmaceutical Industry’s Corporate Social Responsibility". Journal of Business Ethics, published online: February 16, 2010.

Zakus D, Kohler JC, Zakriova V, Yarmoshuk A. "Achieving a Dream: Meeting Policy Goals Related to Improving Drug Access". The Open AIDS Journal, 2010, 4, 25-27.

Garuba HA, Kohler JC, Huisman AM. "Transparency in Nigeria's public pharmaceutical sector: perceptions from policy makers". Globalization and Health, 2009, 5:14.

Kohler JC. “The Renovation of Institutions to Support Drug Access” in J Kirton J, A Cooper A (eds), Innovation in Global Health Governance (179-192), Ashgate, Surrey, 2009.

Kohler JC, Illingworth P. “Access to Medicines and the Role of Corporate Social Responsibility: The Need to Craft a Global Pharmaceutical System with Integrity” in Singer PA, Viens AM (eds), The Cambridge Textbook of Bioethics (359-368). Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2008.

Ng, Emily and Kohler JC. “Barriers to Using the WTO 2003 Decision for Export of Compulsory Licensed Essential Medicines.” Health Law Journal, 16:143-173, 2008.

Kohler JC, Forman L, Lipkus N, "Addressing legal and political barriers to global pharmaceutical access: Options for remedying the impact of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) and the imposition of TRIPS-plus standards", Health Economics, Policy and Law, 3(3):229-256, 2008.

Kohler JC, "Reflections on pills and poverty", Canadian Pharmacists Journal, Volume 140, No. 6, November/December 2007

Kohler JC, "The Morally Uncomfortable Global Drug Gap", Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics, Volume 82, No. 5, November 2007

WHO Collaborating Centre for Governance, Transparency and Accountability in the Pharmaceutical Sector website: 

Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy
University of Toronto
144 College Street
Toronto, Ontario, M5S 3M2
Tel: 416-946-8708
Fax: 416-978-1833
Email: jillian.kohler@utoronto.ca
Website: http://kohler.phm.utoronto.ca/