The International Alcohol Control (IAC) Policy Evaluation Study is a multi-country collaborative research project measuring the impacts of key national level alcohol control policies. The design of the IAC study is modelled on the International Tobacco Control Project.

The IAC study design allows for comparison across countries and can assess changes in drinking behaviour before and after policy changes to evaluate alcohol control policies. The objectives of the IAC study are to inform local policy development and implementation and to allow rigorous evaluation of the impacts of national-level alcohol control policies in each of the participating countries. The overall aim is to reduce alcohol related harm by strengthening the development and implementation of effective alcohol policy.

Longitudinal Survey

The IAC survey is the first international study examining alcohol use and policy relevant behaviours. The IAC survey is a complex survey and is designed to be computer assisted. Data are collected using computer assisted telephone interviews (CATI), in face to face interviews using a netbook, PDA or similar device, or as a web based survey.

The alcohol consumption measures are location and beverage specific and have been adapted for use in different alcohol markets and drinking cultures including for commercial and informal and illicit beverages. This approach has been found to account for high levels of alcohol consumed in a country. This approach collects data on both commercial beverages and informal and illicit beverages. Measures of policy relevant behaviours such as information about the prices paid for alcohol beverages have also been found to be valid.

Alcohol Environment Protocol

The Alcohol Environment Protocol (AEP) assesses the alcohol environment in which the IAC survey participants live and allows comparison of the alcohol environment in very different alcohol markets and cultures. The AEP is an online tool based on administrative and commercial data sets, key informant interviews and observational studies to assess the implementation of effective alcohol control policies in the following areas: alcohol availability, pricing and taxation of alcohol products, social supply of alcohol, alcohol marketing, and drink driving enforcement. The AEP has recently been further developed as part of the IAC-SAFER tool to include brief intervention and alcohol industry interference. 

Cross country comparison

The IAC survey and AEP include key measures for policy domains that are identical or functionally similar across countries to facilitate cross-country comparisons.

An overview of the study design is available here.