Public health policy in the United Kingdom: after the war on tobacco, is a war on alcohol brewing?

Paul Cairney, Donley Studlar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The United Kingdom now has one of the most comprehensive tobacco control policies in the world, a far cry from its status two decades ago. Some influential public health voices have called for a similar campaign against alcohol consumption. But is the comparison appropriate? We identify the factors which were important in the relatively successful campaign for tobacco control, then analyze the obstacles and opportunities facing the movement for more stringent alcohol control. Alcohol policy today often bears a striking resemblance to tobacco policy pre-1990s, when the UK started on its path to becoming a leading regulatory on this policy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)308-323
Number of pages16
JournalWorld Medical and Health Policy
Issue number3
Early online date3 Sep 2014
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2014


  • tobacco polilcy
  • alcohol policy
  • policy change
  • public health

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