George Mason University and The Century Council Announce Groundbreaking Research Project: Understanding Teen Drinking Cultures in America

Mar 26, 2008, 01:00 ET from The Century Council

    WASHINGTON, March 26 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- George Mason University
 and The Century Council today announced the launch of a multi-year research
 effort, "Understanding Teen Drinking Cultures in America," designed to
 provide a foundation for future efforts to fight underage drinking. Based
 at Mason and funded by The Century Council, the goal of the initiative is
 to better understand the psychological and sociological factors that affect
 youths as they make decisions regarding whether to engage in
 alcohol-related behaviors.
     "College and university administrators deal with issues of underage
 drinking on their campuses often," said Mason President Alan Merten. "This
 research will help 'educate the educators' as to why young people drink and
 how we can most effectively communicate the risks of this behavior."
     The project will research several components of teen drinking cultures,
 including: the context of youths' early experiences regarding alcohol;
 patterns of youth alcohol consumption; and the nature of acceptance or
 non-acceptance by peers, parents, community leaders, and other groups.
     "Understanding Teen Drinking Cultures in America" will be co-directed
 by Mason researchers David Anderson, professor of Education and Human
 Development and director of the Center for the Advancement of Public Health
 and Hugh Gusterson, professor of Anthropology and Sociology. Dr. Anderson
 and Dr. Gusterson will also be guided by a national board of advisors.
     Hon. Susan Molinari, Chairman of The Century Council said, "The Century
 Council believes the blend of cultural anthropology and public health
 perspectives may shed new light on the problem of underage drinking and
 pave the way toward identifying new and more effective solutions to this
 persistent problem. Our goal is to provide a research-based foundation for
 The Century Council's efforts that will make an impact years into the
     This latest project represents the second time The Century Council has
 supported independent research at George Mason University focused on the
 fight against underage drinking. George Mason's nationally acclaimed
 "Promising Practices: Campus Alcohol Strategies" initiative was also
 supported by a multi-year grant from The Century Council.
     About George Mason University
     George Mason University, located in the heart of Northern Virginia's
 technology corridor near Washington, D.C., is an innovative,
 entrepreneurial institution with national distinction in a range of
 academic fields. With strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in
 engineering, information technology, biotechnology and health care, Mason
 prepares its students to succeed in the work force and meet the needs of
 the region and the world. Mason professors conduct groundbreaking research
 in areas such as cancer, climate change, information technology and the
 biosciences, and Mason's Center for the Arts brings world-renowned artists,
 musicians and actors to its stage. Its School of Law is recognized by U.S.
 News & World Report as one of the top 35 law schools in the United States.
     About The Century Council
     The Century Council is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to
 fighting drunk driving and underage drinking. Headquartered in Washington,
 D.C. and chaired by Susan Molinari, The Council develops and implements
 innovative programs and public awareness campaigns and promotes action
 through strategic partnerships. Funded by distillers, The Century Council
 promotes responsible decision-making regarding drinking or non-drinking of
 beverage alcohol and discourages all forms of irresponsible consumption
 through education, communications, research, law enforcement, and other
 programs. Established in 1991, The Century Council's many projects and
 activities are highlighted on its website at

SOURCE The Century Council