• David Mechanic
  • David Mechanic
  • Ph.D. Stanford, 1959
  • David Mechanic,  the René Dubos University Professor of Behavioral Sciences, is the founding director of the Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging Research at Rutgers University. His research and writing deal with social aspects of health and health care.

    David Mechanic received his Ph.D. from Stanford and joined the University of Wisconsin faculty in 1960, where he was chair of the Department of Sociology (1968-1970), the John Bascom Professor of Sociology (1973-1979) and Director of the Center for Medical Sociology and Health Services Research (1972-1979). He moved to Rutgers University in 1979, was Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (1980-1984), and established the Rutgers Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging Research (1985) which he directs. He directs the NIMH Center at Rutgers for Research on the Organization and Financing of Care for the Severely Mentally Ill and serves as the Director of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's National Health Policy Investigator's Program.

    Dr. Mechanic is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Institute of Medicine. He has served on numerous panels of The National Academy of Sciences, federal agencies and non-profit organizations.

    David Mechanic has received many awards including the American Sociological Association's Distinguished Career Award, Health Services Research Prize from the Association of University Programs in Health Administration and the Baxter Allegiance Foundation, the Distinguished Investigator Award from the Association for Health Services Research, the First Carl Taube Award for Distinguished Contributions to Mental Health Services Research from the American Public Health Association, and the Distinguished Medical Sociologist Award and Lifetime Contributions Award in Mental Health from the American Sociological Association. He has been a Guggenheim Fellow and Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in The Behavioral Sciences at Stanford.

    He has written or edited 24 books and approximately 400 research articles, chapters and other publications in medical sociology, health policy, health services research, and the social and behavioral sciences. Among his books are Inescapable Decisions: The Imperatives of Health Reform (1994); Painful Choices: Research and Essays on Heath Care (1989); From Advocacy to Allocation: The Evolving American Health Care System (1986); Mental Health and Social Policy: The Emergence of Managed Care (4th Edition, 1998); and Future Issues in Health Care: Social Policy and the Rationing of Medical Services (1979).