This meeting seeks to examine how global and regional governance currently contributes -- and could contribute more in the future -- to the control of alcohol for public health purposes. The meeting also intends to investigate how global and regional governance arrangements, especially through trade and investment law, limit the domestic regulation of alcohol, and options for remedying this situation. Contributions relevant to these topics are sought from those involved in social, political science and policy research and in public health legal research.
Background to the Meeting
Urgent action is needed by governments to control the marketing, labelling and availability of alcohol given the growing evidence about the burden of disease and premature mortality associated with alcohol consumption. But alcohol needs to be seen not just as a domestic issue, but as a global health problem. The sources of the harm (especially in the form of global alcohol industry conduct) cross borders, nearly all countries experience a range of harms from alcohol consumption, and the potential solutions to these problems increasingly require international innovation and solidarity through global governance. In this context, ‘global governance’ refers to the laws, rules, norms, institutions, processes and practices of state and non-state actors across national borders relating to alcohol.
Alcohol is the great exception among problematic psychoactive substances in not being covered by any public health-oriented international drug control conventions. The only international body with a continuing concern with alcohol issues, the World Health Organization (WHO), has expressed good intentions in the Global Strategy to Reduce the Harmful Use of Alcohol and in the Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of NCDs 2013-2020. The WHO is singularly well-placed to improve the global governance of alcohol, with its scientific and technical expertise and its range of instrument-making powers. But it also lacks resources for effective action, with fewer than a handful of staff committed to the area.
At the same time, alcohol is a substance of concern to other international organisations, including the United Nations General Assembly (which included alcohol in the Sustainable Development Goals, targets 3.4, 3.5 and 3.6 under Goal 3) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (which is considering an alcohol labelling standard for the first time). But institutional attention is sporadic and the links with public health efforts to reduce the harms associated with alcohol consumption have not been well drawn to date. The potential for other international organizations, with their diverse agendas, governing instruments, institutional processes and membership dynamics, to further the public health governance of alcohol has not been explored.
This work is urgent given the growing encroachment of international and regional trade agreements and disputes on national and subnational alcohol control powers. Scholarship has been limited about the major global factors that limit the ability of national and local governments to control markets for alcohol. Factors include the growing concentration and globalisation of alcohol producers and distributors, particularly in beer and spirits, but also increasingly in wine; the increasing success of industry efforts to develop and use trade agreements and dispute settlement mechanisms to limit governmental control efforts; and the absence of any international public health-oriented alcohol control agreement or other instrument which could support interventions at the domestic level and assist the defence of alcohol control measures in trade and investment disputes, as the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control has done to some extent in disputes about tobacco.
- Douglas Bettcher, until recently the Director of Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases at the World Health Organization
- Sally Casswell, Director of SHORE, Massey University, New Zealand, and President of the Global Alcohol Policy Alliance, as well as of the Kettil Bruun Society
- David Jernigan, Department of Health Law, Policy & Management, Boston University, a leading researcher on advertising regulations and on the structure of the alcohol industry
- Paula O’Brien, Melbourne School of Law, who has analysed industry-backed complaints concerning alcohol labelling requirements and their resolution in the Technical Barriers to Trade Committee of the World Trade Organization
- Jane Kelsey, Faculty of Law, University of Auckland, an expert on provisions concerning the handling of public health issues in trade agreements
- Jonathan Liberman, Director of the McCabe Centre on Law and Cancer, with expertise in the history of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control
- Gian Luca Burci, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID), Geneva, and former legal counsel of the World Health Organization
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A list of papers being presented
Guidelines for Authors/Speakers, Chairs and Discussants
Authors/Speakers Paper Submission
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Advancing Public Health in International Alcohol Control
Rooms 2.10 and 2.11, Level 2
La Trobe University (City Campus)
360 Collins St, Melbourne
This event is hosted by Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE)
Urgent action is needed by governments to control the marketing, labelling and availability of alcohol given the growing evidence about the burden of disease and premature mortality associated with alcohol use.
Alcohol is a global health issue. The sources of the harm (especially in the form of global alcohol industry conduct) cross borders, and the potential solutions to these problems increasingly require international innovation and solidarity through global governance. Yet alcohol is the great exception among problematic psychoactive substances in not being covered by any public health-oriented international drug control conventions.
Join us at this public event to hear from leading international alcohol policy experts as they examine:
- Options for the future global governance of alcohol
- Australia’s role in the global governance of alcohol
Registration is essential, places are strictly limited.
View the full program here.
Professor David Jernigan (USA)
Health Law, Policy & Management, Boston University
Professor Sally Casswell (New Zealand)
Director SHORE & Co-Director SHORE/Whariki Research Centre
President of the Global Alcohol Policy Alliance, as well as of the Kettil Bruun Society
Maik Dünnbier (Sweden)
Director of Strategy and Advocacy
Participants are responsible for organising their own travel and accommodation.
Anyone who is not an Australian citizen needs a valid visa to enter and spend time in Australia. It is important that conference participants check the visa requirements for entering Australia. Information about visas for Australia can be found on the Australian Government website
Arriving in Melbourne
Please note that Australia has strict customs regulations. It is generally not advisable to bring plant and animal materials (e.g. food such as fruits) into the country. We recommend familiarising yourself with Australian customs and quarantine regulations.
Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) is the main international and domestic airport serving the city. It is located approximately 23 kilometres from the city centre. There is a frequent shuttle service (‘SkyBus’) from the airport to Southern Cross coach and railway station on the western edge of the CBD. Licensed taxis and Uber rides are also available at Tullamarine airport. A one-way licensed taxi to the city should cost approximately AU$55-$65.
Melbourne CBD has a variety of great places to stay.
Please see below for a list of accommodation close by the conference venue
Mantra on Little Bourke
Address: 471 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000, Australia
Tel: +61 3 9607 3000
Mantra on Little Bourke is offering a discount on any room type for stays between 29/09/2019 - 04/10/2019, when the booking is made before 30/08/2019.
Please Note: All rooms are subject to availability at time of booking. There will be no release backs or inventory updates leading up to check in.
Visit: http://www.mghotels.com.au/ to receive 10% off daily rate.
Follow the below simple steps:
- Select the Region and Property, your Travel Dates and the Number of People travelling - hit SEARCH
- Select Change Search - at the top of the page
- Input Promo Code MelbourneLawSchool (case sensitive) in the Promo Box - hit SEARCH again. You will now see the discount applied to the daily rate
- Select the room type you wish to book and hit BOOK NOW to proceed to payment screen
- Fill in all required details to confirm your booking and hit COMPLETE BOOKING
- You will receive an email confirmation once all details have been processed.
***PLEASE NOTE: promo codes are only valid for bookings made online; rooms are subject to availability & will require full prepayment. Bookings will also be subject to any minimum night stay restrictions as listed on the website. Online Terms and Conditions apply to these bookings.
Once booking is confirmed, it can be accessed via My Bookings on the same website by logging in using the Reservation number on your confirmation and the Surname on the booking.
- Mercure Welcome Melbourne
- Best Western Melbourne City
Ibis Budget Melbourne CBD
Address: 97-103 Elizabeth Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000, Australia
Tel: +61 3 9642 0064
Double Tree by Hilton
Address: 270 Flinders Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000, Australia
Tel: +61 3 9654 6888
Email: Contact page
- Treasury on Collins
Sofitel Melbourne on Collins
Address: 25 Collins Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000, Australia
Tel: +61 3 9653 0000
If you would like to stay outside the CBD and a little further from the conference venue, one good option is the suburb of Carlton. It is about a 10 – 15 min tram ride from the conference venue or about a 30 min walk. It is a very nice suburb with lots of restaurants, a great bookshop and a cinema.
Please see below for a list of accommodation in Carlton
- University of Melbourne Graduate House
Rydges on Swanston
Address: 701 Swanston Street, Carlton, VIC 3053, Australia
Tel: +61 3 9347 7811
- Carlton Clocktower Apartments
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Getting around in Melbourne
Melbourne is well serviced by public transport, and it is very easy to get around on trains, trams and buses. In order to travel on public transport in Melbourne, you need to use a Myki pass. Detailed information about Myki is available at the Myki website http://ptv.vic.gov.au/tickets/myki/.
The public transport Victoria website has a handy journey planner function that allows you to type in an origin and a destination and gives you all the available public transport options and instructions.
Places to visit in Melbourne
Queen Victoria Market
Open every day except Monday and Wednesday.
St Kilda Beach and St Kilda Pier
Catch the Number 16 or 96 Tram to the end of Fitzroy Street. If you go straight after the conference at the end of the day, you might be able to see penguins.
Royal Botanic Gardens
City Circle Tram
City Circle Tram service provides a free and convenient way to get around central Melbourne.
State Library of Victoria
A great walk is a walk of Melbourne’s famous arcades and lanes. Free Walking Tours are also a good way to learn more about Melbourne.
Catch the Number 16 or 96 Tram to Luna Park.
National Gallery of Victoria
Koorie Heritage Trust
Shopping in Melbourne
Eating in Melbourne
The weather in Melbourne in September is starting to get warm again after winter however Melbourne weather can be quite variable. For more details about the weather in Melbourne, please see the following websites:
UV levels in Australia are much higher than in the northern hemisphere, and it is advised to take precautions when out in the sun. For more information on UV protection, see the SunSmart website.
Standard voltage in Australia is 230V and the frequency is 50Hz. The plugs in Australia have two flat metal pins shaped live a "V" and some may contain a third flat pin in the centre.
Emergency services (police, fire services and ambulance): 000
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- The meeting is organised by the Centre for Alcohol Policy Research and the Centre for Health Law and Society at La Trobe University and the Melbourne Law School at The University of Melbourne.
- The organising committee for the meeting is:
- Professor Robin Room, Centre for Alcohol Policy Research, La Trobe University
- Dr Deborah Gleeson, Department of Public Health and Centre for Health Law and Society, La Trobe University
- Trish Hepworth, Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education
- Paula O’Brien, Melbourne Law School, The University of Melbourne
- Clare Slattery, McCabe Centre for Law and Cancer
- Please direct queries about the meeting to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Melbourne Law School
- MLS Students
- Alumni and Giving
- About MLS
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