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Geoffrey T. Fong

Geoffrey T. Fong

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Geoffrey T. Fong is Professor of Psychology and Public Health and Health Systems at the University of Waterloo. He is also a Senior Investigator at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research.

Dr. Fong is Founder and Chief Principal Investigator of the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project, a transdisciplinary collaboration of over 100 researchers across 22 countries: Canada, United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Ireland, Thailand, Malaysia, South Korea, China, Mexico, Uruguay, New Zealand, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Bangladesh, Brazil, Mauritius, Bhutan, India, Kenya, and Zambia. The overall objective of the ITC Project is to conduct rigorous evaluation of the psychosocial and behavioral effects of tobacco control policies of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), the first-ever health treaty. In each country, the ITC Project conducts large-scale longitudinal cohort surveys of random samples of adult smokers (about 2,000 in each country), with survey waves being conducted every 1-2 years. These surveys include key mediators of policy impact in each of the FCTC policy domains (e.g., warning labels, smoke-free laws, taxation/price, advertising and promotion). The overall design takes advantage of the many natural experiments that are taking place as countries begin to implement FCTC policies. We are answering questions about whether certain implementations of an FCTC policy are more effective than others (e.g., do graphic images on warning labels have greater impact than text-only warning labels?) and whether this impact varies across the many ITC countries that differ on culture, economic development, and history of tobacco control (e.g., do the graphic images in Thailand have greater impact than the graphic images in Australia?). The ITC Conceptual Model underlying all of the ITC Surveys is inherently a social psychological model.

Dr. Fong has also conducted research on the effects of alcohol intoxication on risky health behaviours (e.g., risky sex)(in collaboration with Tara MacDonald and Mark Zanna), and on the creation, implementation, and evaluation (using randomized controlled trials) of behavioural interventions to reduce HIV/STD risk among inner-city adolescents (in collaboration with John Jemmott).

Dr. Fong received his A.B. in psychology from Stanford University and his Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Michigan and has held faculty positions at Northwestern University and Princeton University. Among the awards that Dr. Fong has received is the Distinguished Teaching Award of the University of Waterloo in 1999. In 2006, Dr. Fong was the first researcher to receive a Senior Investigator Award from the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. In 2009, he and colleagues received the Canadian Institutes of Health Research/Canadian Medical Association Journal "Top Canadian Achievement in Health Research" Award for their work on global tobacco control. In 2010, Dr. Fong received a Prevention Scientist Award from the Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute. And in 2011, Dr. Fong received the CIHR Knowledge Translation Award. In 2012, Dr. Fong, with 2 Waterloo colleagues, received the Lise Manchester Award from the Statistical Society of Canada for "the unique and historic research effort" of the ITC Project. In 2013, Dr. Fong received a World No Tobacco Day Award from the World Health Organization. In 2015, Dr. Fong received a Luther R. Terry Award from the American Cancer Society for Outstanding Research Contribution, a global award conferred once every three years at the World Conference on Tobacco or Health. And in 2015, Dr. Fong was selected as a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.

Primary Interests:

  • Applied Social Psychology
  • Attitudes and Beliefs
  • Culture and Ethnicity
  • Health Psychology
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Persuasion, Social Influence
  • Research Methods, Assessment
  • Sexuality, Sexual Orientation
  • Social Cognition

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Geoffrey T. Fong
Department of Psychology
University of Waterloo
200 University Avenue West
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1

  • Phone: (519) 888-4567, x33597
  • Fax: (519) 746-8631

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