This title discusses the phenomenon of alcohol abuse as a behavioural disease and the associated costs. The author details alcohols status as a psychoactive drug; he notes, however, that in contrast to other psychoactive drugs, alcohol has been widely culturally accepted in Western countries and legally available, except in isolated incidents for a short period of time. Joshua considers which policies are being correctly utilised so as to reduce the abuse of alcohol, and how these policies may operate on a supply and demand model. Whereas programs of prevention and treatment operate on the demand side of alcohol abuse, legislation is directed at the supply side of alcohol; that is, dealing with marketing product, promotion, point of sales and price.
This is the second title in a four volume series The Economics of Addictive Behaviours, consisting of three additional volumes on smoking, illicit drug abuse and overeating.