Mark Lawrence Schrad, “Policy Effectiveness in Historical Context: Pre-Prohibition Liquor-Control Studies Revisited,” World Medical & Health Policy 6/3 (Sept. 2014): 187-202.
The touchstone event in the history of alcohol control policy—both in the United States and globally—has unquestionably been the American experiment with alcohol prohibition. Yet in our haste to dismiss this failed policy as the product of misguided temperance zealotry, we risk overlooking a vast historical literature of objective liquor-control studies that are surprisingly similar to more modern studies of policy effectiveness. This article explores this largely undiscovered liquor-control literature, and places it into the context of the long history of alcohol-control studies. The article concludes that not only is this early liquor-control literature an important part of the heritage of the policy-studies discipline, but also a potentially valuable resource for future historical and longitudinal studies into alcohol and alcohol-control issues.