Understanding contemporary tobacco industry efforts to influence health policy, with a particular focus on the illicit tobacco trade.
Applications are invited for a full-time University studentship to support and work in the Tobacco Control Research Group (TCRG) within the Department for Health.
The tobacco industry has a long history of involvement in the illicit tobacco trade. Through the 1990s overwhelming evidence emerged that cigarette smuggling was a core part of tobacco industry business, actively used on a global basis. This prompted investigations and lawsuits and it had generally been assumed that industry involvement in the trade had ceased. Emerging evidence suggests this might not be the case and that some degree of complicity may be ongoing with, for example, tobacco companies overproducing or oversupplying cigarettes in the apparent knowledge that they will leak into the illicit market. The tobacco industry is simultaneously using arguments about illicit trade as a key part of its efforts to prevent the implementation of public health policies including tobacco tax increases and to shape policy in their own interest by arguing that demand for the illicit product, rather than its supply, drives the problem (Gilmore et al 2015). Tobacco industry actions and messaging on illicit trade thus pose key challenges to public health which require further investigation.
The student will conduct their research under the supervision of Professor Anna Gilmore and other relevant members of the TCRG.
Location: University of Bath
Department: Tobacco Control Research Group
Yearly Stipend: £14,057 (2015/16 rate).
The successful candidate should:
Fulfil the entrance requirements for a Department for Health PhD.
Have at least a strong understanding of social science or public health and associated research methods.
Be willing to travel, including to Africa. Fluency in a language other than English is desirable, but not essential.
Closing date: 4th February 2016