New population-based interventions to restrict the sales and distribution of tobacco products are
increasingly common at the local level, despite little systematic research on these efforts. The retail
environment ? comprised of the built environment (retailer quantity and location) and consumer environment
(price, product availability, and promotion at the point of sale) ? is a critical emerging opportunity for tobacco
control. The overall goal of the Advancing Science and Practice in the Retail Environment (ASPiRE) Program
Project is to build a rigorous, scientific evidence base for effective tobacco control in the retail environment to
reduce tobacco use, tobacco-related disparities, and the public health burdens of tobacco including tobacco-
related cancers. The specific aims of ASPiRE are to: 1) fill important gaps in the evidence base about the
impact of tobacco retailer density and tobacco product availability and promotion on tobacco use and tobacco-
related health outcomes (e.g., cancer); 2) evaluate the potential of local retail interventions to reduce
socioeconomic disparities in exposure to the tobacco retail environment and improve cessation outcomes; 3)
evaluate the underlying mechanisms and effectiveness of different options for intervening in the retail
environment to increase the costs of tobacco use, increase cessation, and reduce consumption; and 4)
enhance community capacity to implement evidence-based tobacco control practices in retail settings.
Three innovative research projects are integral to these aims and will examine the degree to which
tobacco retailer density contributes to tobacco use and tobacco-related disease over time using archival data
(Project 1), evaluate the impact of local retail interventions on tobacco use outcomes using data from a
longitudinal panel of tobacco users adult smokers (Project 2) and develop computational modeling to simulate
community-level interventions to understand how changes in the built and consumer environments may lead to
improved public health (Project 3). Each research project will produce unique and complementary scientific
knowledge that will advance the retail tobacco control evidence base.
The administrative core and two shared resource cores that specialize in 1) data management and
biostatistics, and 2) dissemination and implementation will enhance the impact and reach of the scientific aims
and increase synergy among the research and results from the three projects. ASPiRE takes a `team science'
approach and leverages a successful, enduring collaboration that was established over 5 years of previous
funding from NCI's State & Community Tobacco Control Initiative (U01-CA154281). If ASPiRE achieves its
aims, it will be a national resource for the emerging area of tobacco control retail science and speed translation
of retail science into evidence-based community practices that will reduce the public health burden of tobacco
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