Why this Project Matters
As traditional forms of tobacco advertising become restricted or banned in many countries, the tobacco industry uses the cigarette pack itself as a key marketing method to attract new smokers and retain current ones. The Institute for Global Tobacco Control (IGTC) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health developed the Tobacco Pack Surveillance System (TPackSS) project to systematically document the variety of cigarette packages available in the 14 low- and middle-income countries with the greatest number of smokers.
The goal of TPackSS is to monitor whether required health warnings on tobacco packages are being implemented as intended, and to identify pack design features and marketing appeals that might violate or detract from country tobacco packaging requirements in these countries. TPackSS has been developed with funding from Bloomberg Philanthropies through the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use.
TPackSS in Action
TPackSS began with an explanatory and planning phase in 2012 to identify strategic goals and systematic protocols for the project. The initial collection of tobacco packs in all 14 countries took place in 2013. The TPackSS team has conducted subsequent data collection in countries as they have implemented new health warning label requirements.
What the Site Offers
Our site offers a searchable database of the tobacco packs, as well as information about health warning label requirements and compliance with these requirements. In addition, we include publications from TPackSS findings and other related resources. It is our goal that the site will support advocacy for full implementation of health warning labels that are compliant with country requirements and that are aligned with the World Health Organization (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) Article 11 Guidelines.
TPackSS Data Usage and Data Collection
Interested in doing your own research using TPackSS data? We encourage it!
Before using TPackSS data for your own purposes, we request that you contact firstname.lastname@example.org to receive a TPackSS Data Project request form. This form helps us understand your project idea and allows us to grant you permission to use the data for your project. We want to be a useful partner to you. Due to our deep understanding of the pack collection protocol and its assumptions, we can work with you to ensure that the interpretation of the findings is accurate. This form also allows you to specify if you would like access to additional TPackSS data that is not on the website for a more detailed analysis. Check for additional variables here.
One of the main purposes of the TPackSS project and this website is for its data to be a resource to fellow researchers interested in contributing to the tobacco control field. Therefore, we encourage the use of TPackSS data to help provide evidence to support tobacco control policy around the globe. We kindly ask that you do not use TPackSS data in your own research or publications without IGTC’s consent.
Interested in using the TPackSS protocol for your own data collection? We encourage this too!
You do not need approval from IGTC to do so—you can find protocol information here. We just ask that you appropriately acknowledge your use of the TPackSS protocol in your publications as well as describe any modifications you made to the protocol. Please contact IGTC at email@example.com if you have any questions.
Interested in using TPackSS images in your project or publication? Go for it!
Please just use the following citation to cite any TPackSS photos:
Tobacco Pack Surveillance System (TPackSS). Pack Search. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. https://globaltobaccocontrol.org/tpackss/pack-search [Last Updated 29 April 2022].
Dr. Katherine Clegg Smith (co-principal investigator), Professor in the Department of Health, Behavior & Society at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Dr. Joanna Cohen (co-principal investigator), Bloomberg Professor of Disease Prevention and director of IGTC at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Dr. Kevin Welding (co-investigator), Assistant Scientist in the Department of Health, Behavior & Society and associate director of IGTC at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Lauren Czaplicki, assistant scientist
Jenny Brown, assistant scientist
Grazi Grilo, senior research program coordinator
Sejal Saraf, senior research program coordinator
Qinghua Nian, PhD, senior biostatistician
Beladenta Amalia, PhD, post-doctoral fellow
Hannah Barker, MPH, senior research program coordinator
Alena Madar, research assistant
Egypt: AskConsultant for Family Health
Indonesia: Tobacco Control Support Center
Pakistan: Dr. Amina Khan, The Initiative, CEO and Public Health Consultant
Philippines: GoodThinking Research, Inc.
Thailand: Dr. William Kittredge, Cervelet Consulting LLC President
Turkey: Dr. Asli Carkoglu, Kadir Has University
Ukraine: Life Regional Advocacy Center
Viet Nam: Milestones Company, Ltd