How do industry-funded alcohol and gambling conferences frame the issues? An analysis of conference agendas

Kate Dun-Campbell*, May van Schalkwyk, Mark Petticrew, Nason Maani, Elizabeth McGill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Objective: There is a growing evidence base that unhealthy commodity industries (including alcohol and gambling) promote industry favourable framings of product harms and solutions. These framings adopt a focus on the individual while overlooking broader influences and solutions. One potential method to influence the framing of harms and solutions is funding and organising conferences. This study aims to examine how industry-funded alcohol and gambling conferences present themselves and frame product harms and solutions.

Methods: We conducted a descriptive examination and framing analysis of industry-funded alcohol and gambling conference descriptions and agendas or programmes to examine how conferences were presented and how the included topics framed the issues of product harm and solutions. A hybrid approach (using both deductive and inductive coding) was used for framing analysis, informed by previous research.

Results: All the included conferences were targeted at professionals outside of the respective industry, many specifically mentioning researchers or policy makers. Several of the conferences offered professional credits for attendance. We identified four key frames which are consistent with the existing evidence base: a complex link between product consumption and harm, focus on the individual, deflection from population-level approaches and medicalisation/specialisation of solutions.

Conclusions: We found industry-favourable framings of harms and solutions within the alcohol and gambling conferences included in our sample. These conferences are aimed at professionals outside of industry, including researchers and policy makers, with several offering professional credits for attendance. Greater awareness of the potential for industry favourable framings at conference settings is required.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs
Early online date1 Sept 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 1 Sept 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • alcohol
  • gambling
  • commercial determinants of healt
  • conferences

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