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Centre for Behavioural
Research in Cancer

Impact of tobacco control campaigns on adult smoking in Australia: serial cross sectional surveys

This study related the timing and strength of state and national tobacco control policies and mass media campaigns to change in adult smoking prevalence from 1995 to 2006, using monthly population survey data from Australian five largest capital cities. The first analysis found that higher cigarette costliness and greater exposure to mass media campaigns accelerated reduction in smoking prevalence. The resulting paper was awarded the US National Communication Association’s Distinguished Article award in 2015 for a paper that has had a substantial impact on policy. The second analysis using data from 1991 to 2008 found real tobacco price was related to lower smoking prevalence, with the association being stronger among lower income groups. Together, the papers from the study were recognized by our NHMRC grant being named within the ‘Ten of the Best’ research projects by NHMRC for 2010. Cancer Council Victoria supported additional analysis of an updated data set from 2001 to 2011, where we found that higher cigarette costliness, higher exposure to televised tobacco control campaigns and stronger smoke-free laws were associated with lower adult smoking prevalence.

CBRC staff

Prof Melanie Wakefield, A/Prof Sarah Durkin, Dr Mohammad Siahpush, Prof Vicki White, Dr Michelle Scollo, Prof David Hill, Charles Warne, Dr Kerri Coomber


A/Prof Matt Spittal and Prof Julie Simpson (The University of Melbourne), Prof Simon Chapman (The University of Sydney), Kate Purcell (Purcell Consulting)


NHMRC Project Grant (396402), Cancer Council Victoria


2008 - 2013