Comparing public policies in multilevel governance systems: tobacco control in the European Union
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This is a comprehensive study of tobacco control policy and politics in the European Union, 1970-2000. I develop an instrumental theory of public policy which establishes an approach for connecting policy instruments to policy outcomes. I investigate ways in which political, bureaucratic and interest group (particularly the tobacco industry) factors influence the success of policy instruments aimed at reducing cigarette consumption. I also explore whether and how supranational mandates and directives influence the success of national-level efforts to control tobacco. I test hypotheses empirically using pooled time-series methodologies. The substantive conclusion is that non-price policies are only a qualified success when controlling for addiction, price policy and factors in the policy environment. Price policy is consistently effective, cross-nationally and the public health bureaucracy is a key player in curbing consumption of cigarettes. Major theoretical conclusions include affirmation that supranational policy actions can shape national policy outcomes, that interest group pluralism favors those with a comparative advantage in organizing (in this case, the tobacco industry), and that while policy instruments can be evaluated according to their behavioral attributes, caution should be exercised when simultaneous policy adoption is occurring.
Goerdel, Holly Thompson (2007). Comparing public policies in multilevel governance systems: tobacco control in the European Union. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from