E-cigarettes: history, evidence and policy


  • Prof Virginia Berridge

    London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Project summary

The role and regulation of electronic cigarettes is a matter of public and policy debate. Regulation has varied in different countries, even though research about them is common to all countries. We want to find out what has led to this disjuncture between science and policy.

This project builds on existing discussion and preliminary examinations of the subject from three countries – the UK, the USA and Australia – which have taken a different national stance to e-cigarette regulation and harm reduction. Our hypothesis is that these divergences build on historical differences between the three countries relating to tobacco and health policy. We will outline research in the three countries according to a common format to examine the relationship between science and policy regarding e-cigarettes.

We will hold a workshop in the UK involving public health interests and policy makers involved with e-cigarettes to feed into the research. We will also hold a meeting of participants from a wider range of countries to discuss research outlines, and develop an initial publication and a plan for a funded programme of comparative historical policy research.