Professor Isabelle Szmigin named trustee of Alcohol Change

Isabelle Szmigin, Professor of Marketing, has been named trustee at Alcohol Change for her research around alcohol consumption, social norms and marketing.

Alcohol Change is a new charity formed as a merger of Alcohol Concern and Alcohol Research UK. Its vision is 'a world free from serious alcohol harm' and importantly, not a world free from alcohol. One of its biggest achievements has been the introduction of Dry January in 2013 when over 4,000 people took part. This year, around 4 million people chose to go alcohol-free for the month and found that they saved money, slept better and lost weight.

At a time when young people’s engagement with alcohol seems to be improving, with many drinking less or not at all, there are still 20 people a day dying from alcohol harm. 

On her work, Isabelle comments, "My involvement in alcohol research goes back to around 2007 when, with colleagues in Bath, I was awarded an ESRC grant looking at young people’s social identity and alcohol consumption. Most recently, I received grants from the European Foundation for Alcohol Research (ERAB) and Alcohol Research UK looking at how brands use social media in their marketing of alcohol.

As an academic interested in consumer behaviour, understanding both the consumption and marketing side of alcohol in society is central to my work, and becoming a trustee for Alcohol Change allows me to become engaged not only on the scholarship side, but also in terms of influencing policy and helping reduce alcohol harm."