Tobacco Free Initiative (TFI)

Assessing the national capacity to implement effective tobacco control policies

Operational manual on planning, conduct and follow-up of joint national capacity assessments

World Health Organization

Publication details

Number of pages: 56
Publication date: 2013
Languages: English, Spanish
ISBN: 978 92 4 150525 3 (English)
ISBN: 978 92 4 350525 1 (Spanish)



This manual describes a methodology for use by governments and civil society to assess a country’s capacity to implement tobacco control measures effectively. A national capacity assessment is a joint exercise between a government and the WHO, with the participation of national and international partners, which includes an analysis of the commitment and the organizational structure available to implement evidence-based tobacco control measures that are the most effective in reducing tobacco use, known as “MPOWER” and corresponding to several demand reduction provisions included in the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. It also examines other capacity elements, such as existing partnerships; human and financial resources; and technical, managerial and political processes indispensable for implementing the policies effectively. At countries’ request, the capacity for implementing additional measures may be assessed as well, according to national circumstances and priorities in the context of their WHO Framework Convention obligations. The end-product is a joint assessment report, which includes a set of recommendations for potential actions to guide government and civil society at any stage of their tobacco control approach, and which may result in statements of national policy and priorities towards a short- and medium-term tobacco control plan.