School of Social and Political Science

Dr Rachel Barry

Job Title

Research fellow

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Mobile telephone number
+44 770 978 8966

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Building (Address)

18 Buccleuch Place

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Research interests

Research interests

Global health governance, drug governance, policy dynamics, policy coherence, policy space, low-and-middle-income countries, unhealthy commodity industries, policy change


My principal research interests are understanding challenges to policy coherence within health, the interplay between health, agriculture, sustainable development and finance policies and the relationships between neoliberalism, the commercial determinants of health and governance mechanisms over the supply of unhealthy commodities. Currently, I am a research fellow on the Tobacco Control Capacity Project, examining governance challenges and opportunities for comprehensive implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in five different low-and-middle-income countries.

Previously, I was a research assistant at the University of California, San Francisco's Centre for Tobacco Control Research and Education. This research involved analysing corporate interest in cannabis legalisation and the relevance and influence of tobacco and alcohol policy on cannabis and e-cigarette policy debates and development, comparatively assessing US policies to regulate newly emergent legal markets. These various projects have been written up in journal articles, published in several high-impact journals including PLoS Medicine, Milbank Quarterly, Addiction, Journal of Adolescent Health and the American Journal of Public Health. One of my publications was later used by a group of medical professionals from Massachusetts in a 2019 statement of concern regarding efforts to regulate cannabis in the US (see: I was also a member of the expert group California Lt. Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana Policy, Regulatory and Tax Structure Group, and an expert advisor for the Canadian Health Secretariat and the California Tobacco Control Program’s Loop Health Equity program.

I received my PhD in International Public Health Policy from the University of Edinburgh Global Health Policy Unit, and hold a Masters in Political Science from San Diego State University.

My research has received widespread media attention, including interviews with several high-profile news outlets such as Time Magazine, Vice News, Healthline and US National Public Radio.

Works within

Publications by user content

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Kumar P, Barry RA, Kulkarni MM, Kamath VG, Ralston R, Collin J. Institutional tensions, corporate social responsibility and district-level governance of tobacco industry interference: Analysing challenges in local implementation of Article 5.3 measures in Karnataka, India. Tobacco Control. 2022 Jun 1;31(Suppl 1):s26-s32.
Barry RA, Hill SE, Williams S, Collin J. Challenges of conflict of interest, coordination and collaboration in small island contexts: Towards effective tobacco control governance in the UK Overseas Territories. Tobacco Control. 2022 Jun;31(Suppl 1):s39-s45.
Barry RA, Abdullah SM, Chugh A, Hirpa S, Kumar P, Male D et al. Advancing whole-of-government approaches to tobacco control: Article 5.3 and the challenge of policy coordination in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, India and Uganda. Tobacco Control. 2022 Jun;31(Suppl 1):s46-s52.
Ralston R, Hirpa S, Bassi S, Male D, Kumar P, Barry RA et al. Norms, rules and policy tools: Understanding Article 5.3 as an instrument of tobacco control governance. Tobacco Control. 2022 May 19;31:s53-s60. 057159.
Barry RA. Unpacking the socioeconomic dynamics of marijuana policy change: Why does it matter? Journal of Adolescent Health. 2019 Jul 1;65(1):5-6.
Barry RA, Glantz SA. Marijuana regulatory frameworks in four US states: An analysis against a public health standard. American Journal of Public Health. 2018 Jul 1;108(7):914-923.
Popova L, McDonald EA, Sidhu S, Barry R, Richers Maruyama TA, Sheon NM et al. Perceived harms and benefits of tobacco, marijuana, and electronic vaporizers among young adults in Colorado: Implications for health education and research. Addiction. 2017 Oct;112(10):1821-1829.
Barry RA, Glantz SA. Lessons from Tobacco for Developing Marijuana Legalization Policy. UCSF: Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, 2017. (Tobacco Control Policy Making: United States).
Barry RA, Glantz SA. A public health framework for legalized retail marijuana based on the US experience: Avoiding a new tobacco industry. PLoS Medicine. 2016 Sep 27;13(9):1-9. e1002131.
Cox E, Barry RA, Glantz SA. E-cigarette policymaking by local and state governments: 2009-2014. Milbank Quarterly. 2016 Sep;94(3):520-596.
Barry RA, Glantz SA. A Public Health Analysis of Two Proposed Marijuana Legalization Initiatives for the 2016 California Ballot: Creating the New Tobacco Industry. UCSF: Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, 2016. (Tobacco Control Policy Making: United States).
Cox E, Barry RA, Glantz SA, Barnes RL. Tobacco Control in California, 2007-2014: A Resurgent Tobacco Industry While Inflation Erodes the California Tobacco Control Program. UCSF: Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, 2014. (Tobacco Control Policy Making: United States).
Barry RA, Hiilamo H, Glantz SA. Waiting for the opportune moment: The tobacco industry and marijuana legalization. Milbank Quarterly. 2014 Jun;92(2):207-242.