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ASPiRE: Advancing Science and Policy in the Retail Environment
Funder: National Cancer Institute
Staff Contact: Todd Combs
Project Duration: 2011-present
In 2011, the National Cancer Institute funded the State and Community Tobacco Control (SCTC) Research Initiative to address important under-studied aspects of state and community tobacco control policy and media interventions. CPHSS, along with partners from the University of North Carolina and Stanford University received one of seven Initiative grants to conduct research on how to maximize state and local policies to restrict tobacco marketing in the retail environment.
The broad goals of the five year grant are to conduct extensive surveillance of the tobacco retail environment and to evaluate the impact of policies that counteract point of sale marketing.  Specific project aims include:
  • Aim 1:  Examine changes in the amount and type of tobacco marketing materials and pack prices in a representative sample of tobacco retailers.
  • Aim 2:  Conduct implementation research that will guide states and communities seeking to regulate point of sale marketing more effectively.
  • Aim 3:  Collect data to describe annual changes in tobacco outlet density and composition.
As part of Aim 2, CPHSS will lead a national phone survey of state and county tobacco control programs focusing on retail environment policy activities and implementation capacity. This survey is an important component of the overall study because it establishes a national monitoring system for retail environment policy activities. CPHSS will also conduct case studies in states and communities implementing innovative retail environment policies. 
The ASPiRE project was carried over for an additional year through summer 2017 to continue dissemination and engagement efforts. Through the project's translational products and research articles, results have been disseminated to state and local tobacco control programs and partners to help identify strategies for states and communities to more effectively implement and regulate retail environment policies.

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