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Smoking cessation expert joins the IoP

Posted on 19/10/2012

Professor Ann McNeill

King’s College London’s Institute of Psychiatry (IoP) is pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Ann McNeill to the IoP Addictions Department.

Professor McNeill has an established international reputation in tobacco control research and has published extensively on the subject.  

Her research interests range across tobacco prevention, cessation, harm reduction and local, national and international policy.  She has a particular interest in reducing smoking among more hard-to-reach and disadvantaged populations, such as people with mental health problems.  She was also a co-author of the recent systematic review of tobacco product packaging which underpinned the government consultation on plain packaging.

Professor John Strang, Head of the Addictions Department at the IoP at King’s says: 'Professor McNeill’s career in smoking research and policy began here at the IoP, as part of Michael Russell’s smoking research group. The focus of our research group is in developing and promoting treatments, policies and prevention measures that work and we’re delighted to welcome Professor McNeill back to the IoP to help us achieve our goals.'

Professor McNeill is also Deputy Director of the UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies. Her move to the IoP means that King’s will become the 10th university to join the UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies, a UK Centre of Public Health Research Excellence.

In her new role at King’s, Professor McNeill aims to establish a new programme of tobacco research, policy and practice and to ensure that tobacco is an integral part of the IoP’s teaching and research portfolio. She will also join the Addictions Clinical Academic Group (CAG) at King’s Health Partners Academic Health Science Centre, with a view to having a direct impact on tobacco use across the London catchment area of King’s Health Partners, and more widely.

Professor McNeill says: 'I am delighted to be returning to the Institute of Psychiatry, a move which will enable me to work within one of the leading international institutions in the addictions field. It is important to remember that despite the successes we have had in reducing smoking in the UK, it remains the largest single preventable cause of death and disease here and worldwide, and the largest contributor to health inequalities in the UK, so there is a lot still to do. I look forward to developing new collaborations within the IoP and King’s to further research into reducing the harms of tobacco use in society.'

Professor McNeill graduated from the University of Nottingham with a first class joint honours degree in zoology and psychology in 1982. Since then, she has held a variety of academic and public sector posts focusing largely on tobacco control.

Professor McNeill has published more than 250 academic papers, book chapters, reports and opinion pieces on the subject and her research ranges across prevention, cessation, harm reduction and local, national and international policy. She has an established international reputation, receiving a World Health Organisation (WHO) award for contributions to tobacco control in 1998.

Professor McNeill began her post from October 2012.

For further information, please contact Seil Collins, Press Officer, Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, tel: 0207 848 5377 or email:

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