3003.0: Monday, November 13, 2000 - 12:48 PM

Abstract #5082

Constructing Sound Science with the Tobacco Industry

Elisa Ong and Stanton Glantz, PhD. Institute for Health Policy Studies, UC San Francisco, Box 0936, San Francisco, CA 94143-0936, 415-502-4882, ongelisa@medicine.ucsf.edu

"Sound science" and "junk science" are terms that have increased in use during the past decade in the media and medical literature. Utilization of these terms has intensified with the onset or threat of litigation against various industries for their products' effects on human health or the environment. These terms imply an attempt to distinguish which scientific studies are valid and contribute appropriate conclusions. The tobacco industry has appropriated the "sound science" concept to generate controversy over scientific studies on secondhand smoke. The evidence for the tobacco industry's attempts to construct "sound science" was obtained from the previously confidential tobacco industry documents released from litigation. In this presentation, we describe selected documents that demonstrate Philip Morris' motivations and results with the "sound science" program. With the help of public relation firms Burson-Marsteller and APCO Associates, Philip Morris tobacco company worked to establish "sound science" coalitions in the U.S. and Europe during the 1990s. Through such a coalition, a third-party organization could promote the tobacco industry's stance critiquing secondhand smoke studies. Simultaneously, such an organization could diffuse attention away from the tobacco industry as the primary organizer; various interested scientists, policymakers, and industries were recruited for participation.

Learning Objectives: 1. To recognize tobacco industry tactics in subverting science 2. To identify organizations involved in the tobacco industry's plans 3. To assess the context in which terms like "sound science" are used

Keywords: Tobacco Industry,

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: Philip Morris, Burson Marsteller public relations firm, APCO Associates public relations firm, The Advancement for Sound Science Coalition
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA