Alcohol Availability and Violence
- LAST REVIEWED: 14 October 2016
- LAST MODIFIED: 22 April 2013
- DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199756797-0114
- LAST REVIEWED: 14 October 2016
- LAST MODIFIED: 22 April 2013
- DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199756797-0114
Empirical studies of the effects of alcohol availability on violence began to emerge in the 1980s and 1990s. These initial studies were generally ecological and cross-sectional and tended to use official crime statistics as the source of data for violence and assess alcohol availability in terms of outlet density. Also, most studies were implicitly based on the availability theory of alcohol-related problems, that is, the idea that consumption will increase as availability increases and this, in turn, will lead to a rise in both excessive drinking and alcohol-related problems. These studies were also consistent in showing an association between alcohol outlet densities and violent crime, and these associations remained once social and demographic characteristics of the geographic units of analysis (such as poverty and residential mobility) were controlled for in the data analysis. Since these early studies, considerable advances have been made in the field, especially methodologically. These advances include the use of geospatial statistical methods and space-time models, the use of longitudinal study designs, and the assessment of interventions and policy initiatives that either increase or decrease the availability of alcohol. The latter includes studies that focus on the days of sale and hours of sale of alcohol, as well as studies that focus on changes in outlet density. Also, the types of violence that have been studied have expanded beyond police reports of violent crime to include hospital admission data pertaining to assaults and injuries, social service data pertaining to child abuse and neglect and domestic violence, and self-reports of victimization. Theoretical advances have been less noticeable as this essentially empirical and methodological literature has not, for the most part, been a source of theory development and testing. Hopefully, this will change in the near future as alcohol studies researchers start to draw on ecological theories from within criminology and other social sciences in an effort to better understand the empirical association between alcohol availability and violence.
Although not focused specifically on violence, Babor, et al. 2010 presents a global perspective on alcohol use and related problems and a thorough review of the evidence pertaining to prevention policies and programs. The NIAAA monograph Wilson and Dufour 2000 is also not focused specifically on violence, but it contains a number of excellent papers that address the methodological issues encountered when studying alcohol availability and alcohol-related problems in small geographic areas. Campbell, et al. 2009 and Popova, et al. 2009 each review the research literature pertaining to the association between alcohol availability and alcohol-related problems in general. Parker and Auerhahn 1998 and Livingston, et al. 2007, while not systematic, are focused specifically on the association between alcohol availability and violence and also discuss the theories that have been presented to explain the association between alcohol availability and violence. Roman, et al. 2008 reviews the studies that have specifically focused on the relationship between alcohol outlets and crime, including violence, child maltreatment, robbery, and property crime.
Babor, T. F., R. Caetano, S. Casswell, et al. 2010. Alcohol: No ordinary commodity. 2d ed. New York: Oxford Univ. Press.
This book presents a review of the evidence pertaining to drinking patterns and alcohol-related problems worldwide and discusses the policy options available for addressing these. It focuses on six specific strategies, including regulating the physical availability of alcohol and modifying various drinking contexts.
Campbell, C. A., R. A. Hahn, R. Elder, et al. 2009. The effectiveness of limiting alcohol outlet density as a means of reducing excessive alcohol consumption and alcohol-related harms. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 37:556–569.
This paper presents a systematic review of studies of alcohol outlet density and alcohol-related problems including violence. The research reviewed includes interrupted time-series studies, privatization studies, assessments of alcohol bans and licensing policy changes, and cross-sectional studies. Available online for purchase or by subscription.
Livingston, M., T. Chiikritzhs, and R. Room. 2007. Changing the density of alcohol outlets to reduce alcohol-related problems. Drug and Alcohol Review 26:557–566.
Presents a discussion of the historical background to the current interest in alcohol availability and violence, a review of key recent studies of the relationship between availability, consumption, and violence, and a discussion of the theories that have been proposed to explain these relationships. The implications of research for the harm policies are also discussed.
Parker, R. N., and K. Auerhahn. 1998. Alcohol, drugs, and violence. Annual Review of Sociology 24:291–311.
Presents a review of the literature on the relationship between alcohol and violence and the literature on the relationship between drugs and violence, and discusses some of the theoretical approaches to understanding these relationships. Available online for purchase or by subscription.
Popova, S., N. Giesbrecht, D. Bekmuradov, and J. Patra. 2009. Hours and days of sale and density of alcohol outlets: impacts on alcohol consumption and damage: A systematic review. Alcohol and Alcoholism 44:500–516.
Presents a systematic review of studies published between 2000 and 2008 that examined the effects of alcohol outlet density and hours and days of sale on alcohol use and alcohol-related problems including violence.
Roman, C. G., S. E. Reid, A. S. Bhati, and B. Tereschchenko. 2008. Alcohol outlets as attractors of violence and disorder: A closer look at the neighborhood environment. Washington, DC: Urban Institute.
The first chapter of this report provides a detailed review of the empirical literature that has examined the association between alcohol outlet locations/density and crime.
Wilson, R. A., and M. C. Dufour. 2000. The epidemiology of alcohol problems in small geographic areas. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Research Monograph 36. Bethesda, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services.
This edited volume contains ten papers that focus on alcohol consumption/outlet density and related problems in small geographic areas. The topics covered include the use of social indicator models, the use of survey and archival data, geographic information systems, and reducing problems through controls on availability and price.
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content on this page. Please subscribe or login.
How to Subscribe
Oxford Bibliographies Online is available by subscription and perpetual access to institutions. For more information or to contact an Oxford Sales Representative click here.
- Access to Health Care
- Action Research
- Active Aging
- Active Living
- Adolescent Risk-Taking Behavior in the United States
- Advocacy, Public Health
- Agricultural Safety and Public Health
- Air Quality: Health Effects
- Air Quality: Indoor Health Effects
- Alcohol Availability and Violence
- Alternative Research Designs
- Ambient Air Quality Standards and Guidelines
- American Perspectives on Chronic Disease and Control
- Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)
- Asthma in Children
- Attachment as a Health Determinant
- Behavior Change Theory in Health Education and Promotion
- Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance
- Bicycling and Cycling Safety
- Birth and Death Registration
- Birth Cohort Studies
- Board of Health
- Built Environment and Health, The
- Business and Corporate Practices
- Cancer Communication Strategies in North America
- Cancer Prevention
- Cancer Screening
- Capacity Building
- Capacity Building for NCDs in LMICs
- Capacity-Building for Applied Public Health in LMIC: A US ...
- Cardiovascular Health and Disease
- Child Maltreatment
- Children, Air Pollution and
- Children, Injury Risk-Taking Behaviors in
- Children, Obesity in
- Citizen Advisory Boards
- Climate Change and Human Health
- Climate Change: Institutional Response
- Clinical Preventive Medicine
- Community Air Pollution
- Community Development
- Community Gardens
- Community Health Assessment
- Community Partnerships and Coalitions
- Community-Based Participatory Research
- Complexity and Systems Theory
- Definition of Health
- Dental Public Health
- Design and Health
- Dietary Guidelines
- Ecological Approaches
- Enabling Factors
- Environmental Laws
- Environmental Protection Agency
- Ethics of Public Health
- Evidence-Based Public Health Practice
- Family Planning Services and Birth Control
- Food Safety
- Food Security and Food Banks
- Food Systems
- Frail Elderly
- Functional Literacy
- Genomics, Public Health
- Geographic Information Systems
- Geography and Health
- Global Health
- Global Health Diplomacy
- Global Health Promotion
- Guide to Community Preventive Services, The
- Health Administration
- Health Communication
- Health Disparities
- Health Education
- Health Impact Assessment
- Health in All Policies
- Health in All Policies in European Countries
- Health Literacy
- Health Literacy and Non-Communicable Diseases
- Health Measurement Scales
- Health Planning
- Health Promoting Hospitals
- Health Promotion
- Health Promotion Workforce Capacity
- Healthy People Initiative
- Hepatitis C
- High Risk Prevention Strategies
- Human Rights, Health and
- Immigrant Populations
- Immunization and Pneumococcal Infection
- Indigenous Peoples, Public Health and
- Indigenous Populations of North America, Australasia, and ...
- Indoor Air Quality Guidelines
- Internet Applications in Promoting Health Behavior
- Intersectoral Strategies in Low - Middle Income Countries ...
- Justice, Social
- Knowledge Translation and Exchange
- Knowledge Utilization and Exchange
- Law of Public Health in the United States
- Media Advocacy
- Mental Health
- Mental Health Promotion
- Migrant Health
- Motor Vehicle Injury Prevention
- Multi-Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis
- National Association of Local Boards of Health
- National Public Health Institutions
- Needs Assessment
- Obesity Prevention
- Occupational Cancers
- Occupational Safety and Health
- Oral Health Equity for Minority Populations in the United ...
- Ottawa Charter
- Parenting and Work
- Parenting Skills and Capacity
- Participatory Action Research
- Patient Decision Making
- Pesticide Exposure and Pesticide Health Effects
- Physical Activity and Exercise
- Physical Activity Promotion
- Polio Eradication in Pakistan
- Population Aging
- Population Determinants of Unhealthy Foods and Beverages
- Population Health Objectives and Targets
- Precautionary Principle
- Prenatal Health
- Program Evaluation in American Health Education
- Program Planning and Evaluation
- Public Health, History of
- Public Health Surveillance
- Public-Private Partnerships in Public Health Research and ...
- Public-Private Partnerships to Prevent and Manage Obesity ...
- Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment
- Radiological and Nuclear Emergencies
- Randomized Controlled Trials
- Real World Evaluation Strategies
- Reducing Obesity-Related Health Disparities in Hispanic an...
- Rural Health in the United States
- Safety, Patient
- Sex Education in HIV/AIDS Prevention
- Skin Cancer Prevention
- Smoking Cessation
- Social Determinants of Health
- Social Epidemiology
- Social Marketing
- Statistics in Public Health
- Systems in the United States, Public Health
- Systems Theory in Public Health
- Traditional, Complementary, Alternative, and Integrative M...
- Translation of Science to Practice and Policy
- Traumatic Stress and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Tuberculosis among Adults and the Determinants of Health
- Unintentional Injury Prevention
- Urban Health
- Vaccine Hesitancy
- Violence Prevention
- Water Quality
- Water Quality and Water-Related Disease
- Weight Management in US Occupational Settings
- Worksite Health Promotion