Analysing and comparing concepts of addiction for improved social and health outcomes in Australia – project completed


Project Team

Chief Investigator:

Professor Suzanne Fraser, National Drug Research Institute, Curtin University

Contact Person:

Professor Suzanne Fraser, National Drug Research Institute, Curtin University


Australian federal and state governments spend billions of dollars per year responding to alcohol and other drug consumption. In doing so, they operationalise a wide range of prevention, education and treatment measures, all of which are the subject of intense public scrutiny and controversy. Prevention education initiatives, for example, attract criticism for reproducing social stigma. Government rhetoric on alcohol and other drug use is criticised for being at odds with program funding. Drug consumers are urged to seek treatment yet some experts have pointed out that its effectiveness is modest. As these debates suggest, alcohol and other drug policy and practice is a complex arena shaped in no small part by social and political forces, as well as longstanding unexamined assumptions about the origins, nature and meaning of drug use and addiction. Using an international comparative method involving qualitative interviewing, policy analysis and other methods across three sites: Australia, Canada and Sweden, this research will analyse a key concept underlying much of the political struggle over AOD policy and service provision: addiction. This analysis will better inform policy, and help develop clearer concepts and more productive approaches for improving alcohol and other drug-related health and social outcomes in Australia.


Fraser, S., Moore, D., & Keane, H. (2014). Habits: Remaking addiction. Palgrave Macmillan.

Journal Articles

Fraser, S. (2017). The future of ‘addiction’: Critique and composition. International Journal of Drug Policy, 44, 130-134.

Dwyer, R., & Fraser, S. (2017). Engendering drug problems: Materialising gender in the DUDIT and other screening and diagnostic ‘apparatuses’. International Journal of Drug Policy, 44, 135-144.

Farrugia, A., & Fraser, S. (2017). Prehending addiction: Alcohol and other drug professionals’ encounters with ‘new’ addictions. Qualitative Health Research, 27(13), 2042-2056.

Dwyer, R., & Fraser, S. (2017). Celebrity enactments of addiction on Twitter. Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies.

Fraser, S. (2017). Do practice approaches go far enough in shifting focus away from the individual? Addiction, 113(2), 215-216.

Fraser, S., Pienaar, K., Dilkes-Frayne, E., Moore, D., Kokanovic, R., Treloar, C., & Dunlop, A. (2017). Addiction stigma and the biopolitics of liberal modernity: A qualitative analysis. International Journal of Drug Policy, 44, 192-201.

Seear, K., & Fraser, S. (2016). Addiction veridiction: Gendering agency in legal mobilisations of addiction discourse. Griffith Law Review, 25(1), 13-29.

Fraser, S., valentine, k., & Seear, K. (2016). Emergent publics of alcohol and other drug policymakingCritical Policy Studies.

Fraser, S. (2016). Articulating addiction in alcohol and other drug policy: A multiverse of habitsInternational Journal of Drug Policy, 31, 6-14.

Dwyer, R., Fraser, S., & Dietze, P. (2016). Benefits and barriers to expanding the availability of take-home naloxone in Australia: A qualitative interview study with service providers. Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, 23(5), 1-9.

Dwyer, R., & Fraser, S. (2016). Making addictions in standardised screening and diagnostic tools. Health Sociology Review, 25(3), 223-239.

Dwyer, R., & Fraser, S. (2016). Addicting via hashtags: How is Twitter making addiction? Contemporary Drug Problems, 43(1), 79-97.

Seear, K., Fraser, S., Moore, D., & Murphy, D. (2015). Understanding and responding to anabolic steroid injecting and hepatitis C risk in Australia: A research agendaDrugs: Education, Prevention & Policy22(5), 449–455.

Moore, D., Fraser, S., Törrönen, J., & Eriksson Tinghög, M. (2015). Sameness and difference: Metaphor and politics in the constitution of addiction, social exclusion and gender in Australian and Swedish drug policy. International Journal of Drug Policy, 26(4), 420-428.

Fraser, S. (2015). A thousand contradictory ways. Addiction, neuroscience, and expert autobiography. Contemporary Drug Problems, 42(1), 38-59.

Dwyer, R., & Fraser, S. (2015). Addiction screening and diagnostic tools: ‘Refuting’ and ‘unmasking’ claims to legitimacyInternational Journal of Drug Policy, 26(12), 1189-1197.

One thought on “Analysing and comparing concepts of addiction for improved social and health outcomes in Australia – project completed

  1. Pingback: Research visit: Sweden and Belgium | SSAC

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