New Research Studies to Investigate the Effects of Law on Public Health

New Research Studies to Investigate the Effects of Law on Public Health

January 14, 2013

ChangeLab Solutions announces its involvement in two of 12 new research projects funded by Public Health Law Research (PHLR), a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).

State Laws that Block Local Tobacco Policies

Do states that block cities and counties from enacting tobacco control laws see higher rates of smoking and tobacco-related diseases in the long run? A new research project aims to find out.

ChangeLab Solutions has announced the launch of a new study looking at the health effects of state laws that preempt local policies addressing, for instance, smoking in workplaces and public places, youth access to tobacco products, and tobacco advertising.

The study will examine the impact on public health behaviors and outcomes, including adult and youth tobacco initiation, use, and cessation rates, lung cancer rates, and other chronic diseases associated with tobacco use.

The research findings will inform issues beyond tobacco control. Preemption – the invalidation of state law by federal law, or local law by state law – has also been used to block local obesity prevention interventions.

The study will be led by Anne Pearson, JD, MA, vice president of programs at ChangeLab Solutions, and Jamie Chriqui, PhD, MHS, senior research scientist with the Institute for Health Research and Policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago.


Analyzing the Costs and Impacts of Joint Use Agreements

Schools often keep facilities like gyms, fields, and playgrounds locked up after hours because of concerns about security, liability, and maintenance. But many cities and towns are resolving these issues through joint use agreements: written contracts spelling out terms that allow public agencies and nonprofits to share responsibilities and allow public access for recreation use.

In a new research study funded by PHLR, ChangeLab Solutions will partner with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health to assess the costs and impacts of opening schoolyards to the public through joint use agreements.

For more on both projects described here, see