Robert Whitaker began his career working as a scientist and medical reporter at the Albany Times Union newspaper in New York. His journalism articles won many awards, including a George Polk Award for medical writing, and a National Association of Science Writers' Award for Best Magazine Article. He co-wrote a series for The Boston Globe that earned him the position as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 1998. Later, he wrote four books. A majority of his writing revolves around psychiatry, the pharmaceutical industry, and medical histories.