Law and Ethics Initiative

The Football Players Health Study at Harvard University is a research initiative established to improve the health and well-being of professional football players. The project is funded through a contract between the National Football League Players Association and Harvard Medical School, and includes three main components: (1) a Players Health Study focused on the health and well-being of former National Football League players; (2) a Pilot Studies program focused on identifying and supporting innovative, high-return research studies that have a strong likelihood of impacting the health of football players; and (3) a Law and Ethics component, led by the Petrie-Flom Center.

The Law and Ethics Initiative seeks to promote understanding of the legal and ethical issues that may enhance or impede player health, and to this end, develop appropriate responsive strategies and recommendations.  Key projects include:

  • A qualitative research study (“listening tour”), conducted in collaboration with the Hastings Center.  This study will catalogue the legal and ethical concerns of players and their families related to their health and wellbeing, which will also be used to identify new priority projects for the Law and Ethics Initiative

  • A comparative legal and organizational policy analysis of various professional sports leagues to identify best practices in protecting player health and wellbeing, also conducted in collaboration with the Hastings Center

  • Development of an ethical framework and accountability structure for various stakeholders that may influence player health and wellbeing, including recommendations about the responsibilities of relevant parties

  • Public conferences, events, and publications to facilitate discussion of law and ethics issues, and to solicit feedback from players and other stakeholders

The Law and Ethics Initiative team also works to advise on legal and ethical issues that may arise in the clinical portions of the Players Health Study.

 

To learn more about the Football Players Health Study at Harvard University, please visit the Study’s website here, and watch the video below:

 

 

Football Players Health Study Staff:

I. Glenn Cohen, JD

Professor of Law, Harvard Law School

Faculty Director, Petrie-Flom Center

Lead, Law and Ethics Initiative, Football Players Health Study

 

Holly Fernandez Lynch, JD, MBioethics

Executive Director, Petrie-Flom Center

Co-Lead, Law and Ethics Initiative, Football Players Health Study

 

 

Christopher Deubert, JD, MBA

Senior Law and Ethics Associate, Petrie-Flom Center

Football Players Health Study 

 

 

Justin Leahey

Project Coordinator, Petrie-Flom Center

Football Players Health Study

 

 

 

Football Players Health Study Collaborators:

Michael Gusmano, PhD, Political Science, MA Public Policy

The Hastings Center

Research Scholar

 

 

Karen J. Maschke, PhD, Political Science, MA Bioethics

The Hastings Center

Research Scholar

 

 

Sarah McGraw, PhD, Medical Anthropology

The Hastings Center

Senior Research Scholar