Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Eberly College of Arts and Sciences


Political Science

Committee Chair

Donley Studlar

Committee Co-Chair

Scott Crichlow

Committee Member

Graeme Donovan

Committee Member

Susan Hunter

Committee Member

John Kilwein.


The study investigates the politics characterizing the adoption of tobacco control policy in Ghana and Malawi as a way of contributing to political science literature. It combines the global advocacy network, the multi-level policy transfer, and the liberal-constructivist theories as a single framework to examine their effects on tobacco control policy adoption. Methodologically, the study uses a comparative case study approach complemented by elite interviews, review of secondary materials, and policy documents. The study finds that neither of the Parliaments of the two countries has adopted any legislation that is properly enforced. However, both countries have certain voluntary agreements to control tobacco that were adopted through administrative directives by the Ministry of Health. Ghana has signed and ratified the WHO-FCTC protocol and the voluntary agreements adopted are well respected. In addition, the National Parliament is currently debating a draft tobacco control bill with the hope of passing a law before the end of 2012. On the contrary, Malawi has not signed the FCTC tobacco control protocol and the few voluntary agreements are in jeopardy following the establishment of a privately owned domestic tobacco manufacturing company in 2009. In the end, the study argues that the voluntary agreement often considered ineffective tobacco control instrument in many western countries could be the means of controlling the health hazards associated with tobacco in developing countries where the National Parliament fails to adopt tobacco control legislation. However, the effectiveness of the voluntary agreement depends on the structure and nature of activities of the tobacco industry network and tobacco control network, especially the influence of the Ministry of Health in each of the countries and possibly other developing countries. Where policymakers are directly involve in the tobacco business, little maybe achieve with the adoption of voluntary agreements as tobacco control instruments and vice versa.