For any strategy aimed to reduce socioeconomic inequities in health in Europe it is vital to tackle the large and widening inequalities in smoking. However, there is only limited evidence on effectiveness of tobacco control policies in terms of reducing inequalities. Especially lacking are evaluations of the effects of policies that have actually been implemented in different European countries. In addition, no studies have assessed the role of “strategic drivers” such as social welfare or educational policies.
The aim of the proposed project is to analyse various “natural policy experiments” within Europe with the aim to generate new empirical evidence on the effectiveness of possible strategies to reduce inequalities in smoking. The project has three parts. First, time trends in various European countries will be analyzed with the aim to assess whether changes in national tobacco control policies have influenced inequalities in smoking cessation among adults. Second, comparisons between European countries will be made with the aim to assess whether cross-national differences in specific tobacco control policies were associated with inequalities in smoking initiation among adolescents. These cross-national comparisons will also assess whether different types of educational systems are associated with inequalities in smoking initiation. Third, the project will review the published results of intervention studies, and integrate these with our results. The combined evidence base will be disseminated across Europe, especially among those who are involved in the development of tobacco control policies and health-in-all policies.
This innovative project will develop comparative research into a new strategy for the evaluation of natural experiments, combining methods from different disciplines. Top researchers from different European countries will work together, and bring together four large international networks relevant to inequities in smoking.
Call for proposal
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