Tobacco control partnership capacity: An overview and comparison of 18 European partnerships

M.C. Willemsen*, T.G. Kuijpers, A.E. Kunst

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In most countries, public health partnerships exist to advance national tobacco control. We assessed characteristics related to tobacco control partnership capacity across Europe. METHODS We developed a tool to assess partnership characteristics related to their theoretical capacity to influence policy. The tool was based on an existing framework in the literature, which we adapted for the tobacco control field, through an expert panel, insights from the literature and pilot tests. The tool consists of three dimensions: resources (8 items), member characteristics (2 tems), and organizational characteristics (8 items) and was administered to 18 European partnerships across 17 European countries in 2019. RESULTS Whereas several characteristics likely related to tobacco control partnership capacity were highly prevalent across European partnerships, some were not. Of all 18 partnerships, 5 did not include professional lobbyists, 7 did not have access to national information on tobacco industry presence and lobbying, 9 had no influence on national research agendas, and 7 did not maintain working relationships with the relevant Minister or Secretary of State. Furthermore, 5 of 18 partnerships had no agreement on roles and responsibilities of member organizations, and 6 had no agreement on how credits are divided across member organizations. A leadership figure was absent in 6 of 18 partnerships. CONCLUSIONS This study confirms that tobacco control partnerships vary greatly in the extent to which they possess characteristics associated with their ability to advance tobacco control. There is much room for improvement of European tobacco control partnerships.

Original languageEnglish
Article number34
Number of pages11
JournalTobacco prevention & cessation
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2021


  • tobacco control
  • advocacy
  • partnerships
  • coalitions
  • alliances
  • tobacco policy

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