Alcohol marketing and young people's drinking: What the evidence base suggests for policy



Gordon R, Hastings G & Moodie C (2010) Alcohol marketing and young people's drinking: What the evidence base suggests for policy. Journal of Public Affairs, 10 (1-2), pp. 88-101.

As the influence of alcohol marketing on young people remains a highly contested topic we review the recent literature to examine if the debate has moved on. The extant literature shows that while many econometric studies suggest alcohol marketing to have a minimal effect on youth alcohol consumption, more focussed consumer studies, particularly recent research employing sophisticated longitudinal designs, demonstrate clear links between alcohol advertising and drinking behaviour. Encouragingly, some of the more recent research studies assess marketing activity beyond advertising; sponsorship, new media, viral marketing, price promotions, new forms of distribution, product development and increased point of sale activity. The literature presents increasingly compelling evidence that alcohol marketing is directly impacting upon young people’s drinking behaviour. The implications of this on the current policy debate surrounding alcohol marketing activities and regulation in the UK and beyond are discussed. Furthermore a research agenda for alcohol marketing for the future is offered.

alcohol; marketing; youth; longitudinal; advertising; sponsorship; new media; product development; point of sale; regulation; Alcoholics Services for Scotland; Alcoholism Scotland

Journal of Public Affairs: Volume 10, Issue 1-2

Publication date28/02/2010
Date accepted by journal01/01/1990

People (2)


Professor Gerard Hastings

Professor Gerard Hastings

Emeritus Professor, Institute for Social Marketing

Professor Crawford Moodie

Professor Crawford Moodie

Professor, Institute for Social Marketing