SPECTRUM Consortium

Our Research

Find more information about the general aims of SPECTRUM and its eight integrated work packages below.

The main causes of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) include consumption of unhealthy commodities such as tobacco, alcohol or foods high in fat, salt and/or sugar. These exposures are preventable, but the commodities involved are highly profitable. Their consumption and health and social impacts are also inequitable and driven by complex systems of production, distribution and promotion dominated by transnational companies - Unhealthy Commodity Producers (UCPs). UCPs’ economic interests often conflict with health goals and their role in determining health has received insufficient attention.

SPECTRUM will generate new evidence to inform the prevention of NCDs caused by unhealthy commodities and to transform policy and practice to encourage the adoption of healthy environments and behaviours.

With a principal focus on tobacco and alcohol, our work extends to food in key studies. Approaches we develop in future could be applied to other commodities. We are conducting research in eight integrated work packages.

Along with an inter-disciplinary research team, SPECTRUM’s work is co-created with research users from civil society organisations, companies and the main public health agencies in Great Britain. The public will be involved through engagement panels, citizen’s juries and qualitative research. This partnership will ensure that research findings will benefit from an accelerated pathway to inform new policies and practices and will provide valuable data to assess the extent and effectiveness of approaches to addressing NCDs in the UK and beyond.

The SPECTRUM Consortium award from the UK Prevention Research Partnership is focused on the prevention of NCDs in the UK.  It builds on the strong foundation of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies.

Towards governance for health equity

Icon with title of work package: governance and health equity
Work Package Eight: Governance & Health Equity


An image showing a COVID-19 research paper
Information about COVID-19 related research being undertaken by SPECTRUM and/or its researchers