The impact and relevance of tobacco control research in low-and middle-income countries globally and to the US

Carla J. Berg, Geoffrey T. Fong, James F. Thrasher, Joanna E. Cohen, Wasim Maziak, Harry Lando, Jeffrey Drope, Raul Mejia, Joaquin Barnoya, Rima Nakkash, Ramzi G. Salloum, Mark Parascandola

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

23 Scopus citations


International and cross-cultural research is critical for understanding multilevel influences on health, health behaviors, and disease. A particularly relevant area of need for such research is tobacco control. The tobacco epidemic is one of the biggest public health threats globally, killing over 7 million people a year. Research critical to addressing this public health problem has leveraged variability in tobacco use, history, product market, and policies across different countries, settings, and populations, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) where the tobacco burden is increasing. These efforts are needed in order to advance the science and inform practice and policy in various settings, including the US. Several funding agencies provide support for international research focused on tobacco control in LMICs because of the importance and implications of such research. This paper provides some concrete examples of how such research has advanced our knowledge-base and informed practice and policy globally, particularly in high-income countries including the US. Some prominent themes emphasized in this manuscript include: the development of knowledge regarding the diverse tobacco products on the market; better understanding of tobacco use and its impact among different populations; generating knowledge about the impacts including unintended consequences of tobacco control policy interventions; and better understanding tobacco industry strategies and informing advocacy efforts. In summary, international tobacco control research, particularly in LMICs, is critical in effectively and efficiently building the evidence base to advance tobacco control research, policy, and practice globally, including the US, with the ultimate goal of curbing the tobacco epidemic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)162-168
Number of pages7
JournalAddictive Behaviors
StatePublished - Dec 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Ltd


  • Global tobacco
  • LMICs
  • Policy
  • Research capacity-building
  • Tobacco control


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