Henry I. Miller

Robert Wesson Fellow in Scientific Philosophy and Public Policy

Henry I. Miller, MS, MD, is the Robert Wesson Fellow in Scientific Philosophy and Public Policy at the Hoover Institution. His research focuses on public policy toward science and technology, encompassing a number of areas, including pharmaceutical development, genetic engineering in agriculture, models for regulatory reform, and the emergence of new viral diseases.

Miller served for fifteen years at the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in a number of posts. He was the medical reviewer for the first genetically engineered drugs to be evaluated by the FDA and thus instrumental in the rapid licensing of human insulin and human growth hormone. Thereafter, he was a special assistant to the FDA commissioner and the founding director of the FDA's Office of Biotechnology. During his government service, Miller participated frequently on various expert and policy panels as a representative of the FDA or the US government. As a government official, Miller received numerous awards and citations.

Since coming to the Hoover Institution, Miller has become well known not only for his contributions to scholarly journals but also for his articles and books that make science, medicine, and technology accessible. His work has been widely published in many languages. Monographs include Policy Controversy in Biotechnology: An Insider's View; To America's Health: A Model for Reform of the Food and Drug Administration; and The Frankenfood Myth: How Protest and Politics Threaten the Biotech Revolution. Barron's selected The Frankenfood Myth as one of the 25 Best Books of 2004. In addition, Miller has published extensively in a wide spectrum of scholarly journals and popular publications worldwide, including The Lancet, Journal of the American Medical Association, Science, the Nature family of journals, Chronicle of Higher Education, Forbes, National Review, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, the Guardian, Defining Ideas, and the Financial Times. He is a regulator contributor to Forbes.com and frequently appears on the nationally syndicated radio programs of John Batchelor and Lars Larson.

Miller was selected by the editors of Nature Biotechnology as one of the people who had made the "most significant contributions" to biotechnology during the previous decade. He serves on numerous editorial boards.

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Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

Over-Regulating Things Like Asbestos Is Counter Productive

by Henry I. Millervia San Jose Mercury News
Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Several years ago I participated in a colloquium whose title was something like “Advancing Technology: Thinking Outside the Box.” The presentations ranged from the ever-more imaginative uses of robots (fascinating) to irrigating the Sahara Desert for growing crops that by mid-century could sustain the planet’s burgeoning population (unconvincing).

Analysis and Commentary

Desperately Seeking A New FDA Commissioner, A Critical Presidential Appointment

by Henry I. Millervia Forbes
Wednesday, December 21, 2016

In the Trump administration, we can expect a new head of the FDA, one of the 4,000 or so political appointees. The post of FDA Commissioner is one of the most important in the government because the FDA regulates products worth more than $1 trillion, 25 cents of every consumer dollar.

Analysis and Commentary

Time To Get Rid Of The EPA? Scott Pruitt May Be Just The Guy To Do It

by Henry I. Millervia National Review
Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Trump’s nominee for the EPA Administrator could — and should — abolish the agency.

Analysis and Commentary

We Can Reduce Government Waste, Fraud And Abuse--Just By Not Being Stupid

by Henry I. Millervia Forbes
Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Charlie Munger, financial wizard and vice-chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, once remarked to me, “Warren [Buffett] and I made a lot of money just by not being stupid.” I can’t think of a better strategy for reducing waste and abuse in government. President-elect Trump, take notice.

Analysis and Commentary

US National Academies Report Misses The Mark

by L Val Giddings, Henry I. Millervia Nature
Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Last May, the US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) released its eleventh report since 1986 examining the safety and related policy issues of crops improved through biotechnology, commonly (if incorrectly) known as 'GMOs' (genetically modified organisms).


Drain The Regulatory Swamp, Let Agriculture Bloom

by John Cohrssen, Henry I. Millervia Forbes
Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Worries about slow economic growth have shifted the mood of America from “hope and change” eight years ago to “drain the swamp,” which is at least in part a realization that government regulation needs major fixes to spur innovation and job creation.

Analysis and Commentary

On 'GMOs', The New York Times Violates The Rule Of Holes: When You're In A Hole, Stop Digging

by Henry I. Millervia Forbes
Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The New York Times has conducted a decades-long vendetta against the most sophisticated, precise and predictable techniques of genetic engineering applied to agriculture. Bias and inaccuracy have pervaded its op-eds, columns and even its reporting of “news.”

Analysis and Commentary

To Fight The Scourge Of 'Superbugs', We Need A New Regulatory Pathway

by Henry I. Millervia Forbes
Friday, December 2, 2016

It was not until the years just after World War II when streptomycin, the first truly broad-spectrum antibacterial agent, came onto the market, and penicillin began to be widely available that the Golden Age of antibiotic therapy really began. Before that, even seemingly trivial infections of the skin, lungs or other organs could lead to sepsis and death.

Analysis and Commentary

Zzzzzzzzzzzz...Facts You Need To Know About Sleep And Sleep Disorders

by Mia Zaharna, Henry I. Millervia Forbes
Wednesday, November 30, 2016

A certain amount of sound sleep is necessary for optimal health and can affect hormone levels, mood and weight. However, sleep problems, including snoring, sleep apnea, insomnia, sleep deprivation, and restless legs syndrome are common.

Analysis and Commentary

The EPA Shows Again That It’s An Affront To Common Sense

by Henry I. Miller, Jeff Stiervia National Review
Wednesday, November 23, 2016

It’s cooking data to justify costly regulations with disproportionately small benefits.