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TRDRP Strategic Research Initiatives

Since 1999, TRDRP has invested over $69 million in ninety-eight awards addressing four Strategic Research Initiatives. These initiatives address gaps in federal funding, gaps in specific research topic areas, and address state and local policy issues specific to California.

Thirdhand Smoke Research Consortium 

In 2011, TRDRP became the first funding agency in the world to initiate research on thirdhand smoke (THS) as a new frontier in tobacco-related science, with the funding of a multi-investigator, multi-disciplinary Thirdhand Smoke Research Consortium; TRDRP renewed the funding in 2014 and in 2022.

Thirdhand Smoke Resource Center

Policy Research for a Rapid Response

TRDRP research priorities include funding for state and local tobacco control policy research that can address the rapidly changing landscape of newly introduced products that target vulnerable populations. In 2019, this funding led to the establishment of the UC Merced Nicotine and Cannabis Policy Center.

Nicotine and Cannabis Policy Center

Community-Based Research

TRDRP has an over 20-year history of funding community-based participatory research (CBPR) beginning with the Community and Academic Research Award (CARA) and School Academic Research Award (SARA) grant mechanisms.

In 2016, TRDRP began investing in the Community Practice-Based Research (CPBR) initiative. This program funds collaborative health service research projects aimed at identifying clinical, structural, and organizational factors that contribute to or create barriers to the delivery of evidence-based tobacco cessation treatments for lower-income people enrolled in Medi-Cal. TRDRP’s first CPBR grants were made in 2018, and early indicators along with community feedback suggest these investments have already begun enhancing community-level cessation activities within a framework dedicated to sustainable systems change.

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Community Partnered Participatory Research Awards, or CPPRAs, launched in 2020, emphasize longer-term thinking and plans that sustain and translate the benefits from the pilot-phase research to the development of new interventions or the enhancement of existing evidence-informed interventions. The expectation is that interventions resulting from these awards will focus on community- or school-based tobacco prevention and/or cessation, as well as practice, program, or policy change. We also emphasize the importance of community benefit in tobacco control research, cultural humility, and mutual (community and academic) capacity building for a sustained equitable partnership beyond the life of the grant.

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Smoke- and Vape-Free Scholars Initiative (SVFSI)

SVFSI, launched in 2021 supports California State Universities and California Community Colleges, in partnership with doctorate-granting institutions, to develop and administer mentorship & training programs for undergraduate, post-baccalaureate and masters-level students from diverse backgrounds to conduct tobacco-related research projects in a mentor’s laboratory or team, while also engaging in local tobacco control activities.

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A pie chart shows the distribution of funding among TRDRP special initiatives: Thirdhand Smoke: $22.8 million; Community-Academic and School-Academic Partnership Awards: $14.1 million; Community Based Participatory Research Partnerships: $13.3 million; Smoke and Vape-Free Scholars Initiative: $8.2 million; Community-Based Practice Implementation Awards: $6.9 million; Policy Research Centers: $3.8 million.