Generating local evidence on tobacco industry tactics to advance tobacco control objectives: a holistic approach embracing new technology
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Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK), International Research, United States of America
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Health Behavior, United States of America
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, United States of America
Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK), International Communications, United States of America
Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK), Tobacco Industry Accountability, United States of America
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Health Behavior and Society, United States of America
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A446
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Background and challenges to implementation:
As civil society organizations (CSOs) work to overcome barriers in tobacco control, tobacco industry monitoring is a powerful mechanism to advance these efforts. “Big Tobacco, Tiny Targets” is a global project that seeks to expose the tobacco industry's varied tactics used to market tobacco products to kids. Data were collected in 21 countries, among them South Africa, Indonesia, Argentina and Nigeria. Over the evolution of this project, two Bloomberg Initiative partners, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK) and Johns Hopkins University (JHU) developed a unique toolkit that is fully adaptable across partners, countries and organizations with differing levels of research capacity.

Intervention or response:
CSOs identified and documented how the tobacco industry targets children around schools, with training and technical assistance from CTFK. Capacity building activities included CTFK-led in-person and virtual trainings, development and dissemination of an advocacy survey, campaign toolkits, media training and photography guide.
This model evolved as more rigorous research was needed in 15 countries. JHU developed customized observation checklists, conducted in-person trainings for advocates and data collectors to systematically record observations using a mobile data collection platform and walking protocol, and prepared technical reports.
The synergy of these two approaches implemented together serves as a feasible and transferable capacity building approach for enabling CSOs to develop the evidence base for future advocacy campaigns.

Results and lessons learnt:
The launch of in-country Tiny Targets campaigns served to discredit the global cigarette industry while advancing policy objectives, including spurring vigorous enforcement of advertising bans in Jakarta, Indonesia, where the campaign was first piloted. The continued use of this platform to document industry tactics can further expose and discredit the industry among policymakers and the public and build greater support for tobacco control.

Conclusions and key recommendations:
Integrated capacity building for both research and advocacy work bolsters CSO's capabilities to discredit the tobacco industry and overcome barriers in the policy realm.

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