This article revisits the earlier debates on Germany’s abysmal record on tobacco control policies, which attributes that record to cultural, institutional, and political barriers. This article shows that Germany has made progress in tobacco control, though its commitment to smoke-free public spaces is lagging. We argue that the explanation for Germany’s progress on tobacco control is that EU legislation directly and indirectly influenced public attitudes, raised awareness about the health consequences of smoking among the public and medical establishment, elevated the visibility of medical and health NGOs, and altered the institutional venue of policy making. However, in areas where the EU does not impose legislation, such as second-hand smoke, Germany continues to show more modest progress, owing to its federalised structure of health policy. State governments are in change of smoke-free eateries/drinking establishments and they are more susceptible to pressures from the gastronomy sector and allied tobacco interests.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Political Science and International Relations