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Eller College Home > Faculty and Research > Research Buzz > Best Practices in Smoking Cessation Programs

Research Buzz

Keith Provan


  • smoking cessation
  • North American Quitline Consortium
  • networks
  • network ties
  • health care
  • management


Best Practices in Smoking Cessation Programs

Awareness of Evidence-Based Practices by Organizations in a Smoking Cessation Network

This research examines the awareness of evidence-based practices by the public organizations that fund services in the North American Quitline Consortium (NAQC). 

NAQC is a large, publicly funded, goal-directed “whole network,” spanning both Canada and the U.S., working to get people to quit smoking. The researchers’ work builds on prior research on the dissemination and diffusion of innovation and evidence based practices, and considers differences between network ties that are homophilous versus instrumental. They found that awareness of evidence-based practices was highest for quitline funders that were strongly connected directly to researchers and indirectly to the network administrative organization, controlling for quitline spending per capita and decision making locus of control. 

The findings support the importance of maintaining instrumental (a technical-rational argument) rather than homophilous ties for acquisition of evidence-based practice knowledge.  The findings also offer ideas for how public networks might be designed and governed to enhance the likelihood that the organizations in the network are better aware of what evidence based practices exist. 


Keith Provan is the McClelland Professor of Management and Organizations at the Eller College of Management, University of Arizona. Jonathan E. Beagles is a graduate student at the University of Arizona. Scott J. Leischow is a professor of family and community medicine at the Cancer Center, University of Arizona. Liesbeth Mercken is with Maastricht University.

Publication Source

Published in the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 22.

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