Smoking cessation and the environment

Globally, smoking is as a major determinant of ill health and mortality, contributing to approximately 5.4 million deaths each year. Further, the consumption of tobacco has an effect on social, ethnic and geographical inequalities in health.  Previous work suggests that the environment can play a pivotal role in understanding smoking behaviour. Understanding the how the environment can shape smoking offers considerable potential for policy makers tasked with developing successful tobacco control measures.

The CRESH team has considerable experience in examining the role of the environment in shaping smoking status and the trajectories of smoking careers. Previous work has evaluated the success of policy initiatives such as the introduction restrictions on the places in which people are permitted to smoke (‘smoking bans’), and new smoking cessation interventions that have been administered through health care providers. Our work has also considered the impact of the tobacco retail environment, localised stigma and social capital, as well as numerous macro-level drivers of smoking such as income inequality, residential segregation and social disadvantage.


Barnett R, Pearce J, Moon G, 2005, Does social inequality matter? Assessing the effects of changing ethnic socio-economic disparities on Maori smoking in New Zealand, 1981-96. Social Science and Medicine 60, 1515-1526.

Barnett R, Pearce J, Moon G, 2009. Is community inequality associated with smoking cessation in New Zealand, 1981-2006? Social Science and Medicine 68, 876-884.

Barnett R, Pearce J, Moon G, Elliott J, Barnett P, 2009. Assessing the effects of the 2004 New Zealand Smokefree Environment Legislation upon rates of hospital admission for acute myocardial infarction. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health 33, 515-20.

Hiscock R, Pearce J, Barnett R, Moon G, Daley V, 2009. Do smoking cessation programmes influence geographical inequalities in health? An evaluation of the impact of the PEGS programme in Christchurch, New Zealand. Tobacco Control 18, 371-376.

Moon G, Barnett R, Pearce J, 2010. Ethnic segregation and tobacco consumption: a multilevel repeated cross-sectional analysis of smoking prevalence. Environment and Planning A 42, 469-486.

Pearce J, Boyle P, 2005, Is the urban excess in lung cancer in Scotland explained by patterns of smoking? Social Science and Medicine 60, 2833-2843.

Pearce J, Boyle P, Flowerdew R, 2003, Predicting smoking behaviour in census output areas across Scotland, Health and Place 9, 139-149.

Pearce J, Hiscock R, Moon G, Barnett R, 2009. The neighbourhood effects of geographical access to tobacco retailers on individual smoking behaviour. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 63, 69-77.

Thompson L, Barnett R, Pearce J, 2009. Scared straight?: Fear-appeal anti-smoking campaigns, risk, self-efficacy and addiction. Health, Risk and Society 11, 181–196.

Thompson L, Pearce J, Barnett R, 2007. Moralising geographies: Stigma, smoking islands and responsible subjects. Area 39, 508-517.

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