EPISODE 15 – THE ALCOHOL ISSUES PODCAST
For the 15th episode of the Alcohol Issues Podcast we welcome Evan Blecher from the World Health Organization.
Dr. Evan Blecher is an Economist in the Fiscal Policies for Health unit at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. His work focuses on tax policy and its influence on health behaviors, including tobacco, alcohol and sugar-sweetened beverages, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. He is responsible for the development of new streams of work including alcohol and sugar-sweetened beverage taxes.
Discussing alcohol taxation issues: affordability, framing, design and WHO’s work to support countries
In the conversation, Evan and host Maik Dünnbier go deep into the weeds of health taxes, focusing more specifically on alcohol excises taxes. They discuss different terms for health taxes and what they reveal about the purpose and potential of health taxes.
Evan talks for instance about the term “sin taxes” and shares his analysis of the weaknesses of such a frame.
Host Maik Dünnbier also asks Evan about the evidence-base for health taxes in general and alcohol taxes in particular and how confident we can be in the knowledge today. Evan shares deep insights into how to design effective alcohol taxes and how to understand the primary purpose and objectives of alcohol taxation.
In the policy discussion of alcohol taxation often there seems to be a conflict in the minds of policy makers between raising revenue through alcohol taxes or reducing alcohol harm. Maik thus wanted to know from Evan if this conflict really exists and how we can best understand the potential of alcohol taxation.
Given the moment in time, where a public health crisis and an economic crisis are affecting people, communities and societies, WHO is working to support more countries to develop evidence-based alcohol taxes in order to make the most of the current window of opportunity to advance health taxes in general and alcohol taxes in particular to come out of the crisis healthier and stronger.
Resources for the conversation with Evan
You can follow Dr Evan Blecher on Twitter, here.
You can see Evan’s research activity, here (Research gate) and here (Google Scholar).
You can read about the recently released WHO Tobacco Taxation manual, here.
Movendi International’s Science Digest on alcohol taxation can be accessed here.
Listen to episode 15
- Listen to episode 15 of the Alcohol Issues Podcast wherever you get your podcasts.
- You can find the brand new episode on Apple podcasts, here.
- You can also listen to the latest episode on Spotify.
- And you can find episode 15 on Google Podcasts.
- And you can follow the Alcohol Issues Podcast on Podbean, here.