Knowledge synthesis of smoking cessation among employed and unemployed young adults

Am J Public Health. 2007 Aug;97(8):1434-43. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2006.100909. Epub 2007 Jun 28.


Objectives: We synthesized evidence regarding effective strategies for smoking cessation among employed or unemployed young adults aged 18 to 24 years.

Methods: For this knowledge synthesis, we used (1) a systematic review of the scientific literature, (2) a Delphi panel of experts, and (3) 6 focus groups of employed and unemployed young adult smokers.

Results: Of 51 related studies, only 4 included employed and unemployed young adults in their samples (as opposed to students), and none focused solely on them. Using the Delphi process, 27 experts reached consensus on priorities for research, practice, and policy, emphasizing population engagement, recruitment, and innovative interventions. Key themes from focus groups were that interventions should be relevant to young adults, individual choice should be respected, and the positive aspects of quitting should be stressed. Despite having negative views on traditional smoking cessation methods, participants expressed optimism about being able to quit and proposed creative recommendations.

Conclusions: Our findings set an agenda for targeting research, improving practice, and informing policy for smoking cessation among young adults. We also demonstrate the value of using 3 complementary approaches: literature review, expert opinion, and target population perspectives.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Delphi Technique
  • Employment*
  • Female
  • Focus Groups
  • Health Policy*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Ontario
  • Research*
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Smoking Cessation / psychology