Research agendas for alcohol policymaking in the wider world
From comparisons of World Health Organization statistics, it is clear that people in lower-income countries experience more harms per litre of alcohol and different types of harms compared to those from higher-income countries. Yet studies in higher-income countries dominate research on policies to prevent alcohol problems. The paper reports on results of collaborative work to map priority areas for research relevant to low- and middle-income countries. Research focus areas were identified and discussed among potential coauthors from diverse fields with relevant knowledge, with agreement reached on an initial list of seven research priority areas. Areas identified include: (1) the effects of choices (e.g., national vs. local, monopoly vs. licensing system) in organising the alcohol market; (2) involvement/separation of alcohol industry interests in decisions on public health regulation; (3) options and effectiveness of global agreements on alcohol governance; (4) choices and experience in controlling unrecorded alcohol; (5) means of decreasing harm from men’s drinking to family members; (6) strategies for reducing the effects of poverty on drinking’s role in harms; and (7) measuring and addressing key alcohol-induced low-and middle-income country (LMIC) health harms: infectious diseases, injuries, digestive diseases. Paths ahead for such research are briefly outlined.
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