A Transdisciplinary Focus on Drug Abuse Prevention: An Introduction

Document Type



Community and Global Health (CGU)

Publication Date



Medicine and Health Sciences | Mental and Social Health | Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Substance Abuse and Addiction


This article introduces the scope of the Special Issue. A variety of scientific disciplines are brought together to establish theoretical integration of the arenas of drug use, misuse, “abuse,” and drug misuse prevention. Transdisciplinary scientific collaboration (TDSC) is utilized as a process of integration. Introductory comments regarding the strengths and limitations of TDSC are presented. Then, the relevance of genetics to substance misuse and substance misuse prevention is presented. Next, the relevance of cognition for prevention is discussed. Specifically, neurologically plausible distinctions in cognition and implicit cognition and their relevance for prevention are discussed. At a relatively molar social-level of analysis, social network theory, systems dynamic models, geographic information systems models, cultural psychology, and political science approaches to drug misuse and its prevention are introduced. The uses of both quantitative and qualitative statistical approaches to prevention are mentioned next. Finally, targeted prevention, bridging the efficacy-effectiveness gap, and a statement on overcoming disbalance round out the Special Issue. The bridges created will serve to propel drug misuse “prevention science” forward in the years to come. Advances in understanding etiological issues, translation to programs, and ecological fit of programming are desired results.

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© 2004 Informa Healthcare