Geoffrey T. Fong
OC, Ph.D., FRSC, FCAHS
Founder and Chief Principal Investigator, ITC Project
Department of Psychology, School of Public Health Sciences, University of Waterloo, Canada
Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, Canada
Dr. Fong is the University Professor of Psychology and Public Health Sciences at the University of Waterloo and Founder and Chief Principal Investigator of the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project (the ITC Project). He received his A.B. in psychology from Stanford University and his Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Michigan and has held faculty positions at Northwestern University and Princeton University.
Dr. Fong has published over 540 research articles and given over 250 invited talks. Every year since 2015, Dr. Fong has been selected for the Clarivate Analytics List of Highly Cited Researchers, and he is the world’s most productive researcher in the field of tobacco research according to SciVal and 6 of the top ten are associated with the ITC Project.
Dr. Fong has contributed to many landmark reports, including those of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), U.S. Surgeon General, WHO, US National Academy of Sciences, and the UK’s Royal College of Physicians. He was one of the three Scientific Editors of the 2016 WHO/US National Cancer Institute Monograph, The Economics of Tobacco and Tobacco Control. Dr. Fong was a member of the 7-person WHO FCTC Impact Assessment Expert Group, which conducted the official evaluation of the FCTC in its first decade (2005-15). As the Expert Group’s Technical Coordinator, Dr. Fong designed the multi-method evaluation program, the results of which were presented to the FCTC Conference of the Parties in 2016 and published in a supplement of the journal Tobacco Control in 2019. Dr. Fong has also served as an expert consultant for WHO, the FCTC Secretariat, and many countries including Canada, Australia, Brazil, United Kingdom, Malaysia, Singapore, and the United States. He served as an expert for Australia and Uruguay in successful defenses of their policies against the tobacco industry’s legal challenges via trade treaties (Australia’s defense of plain packaging at the World Trade Organization and Uruguay’s defense of their labeling and brand presentation laws at a bilateral trade investment challenge brought by Philip Morris International). Dr. Fong has been a member of many national and global advisory groups including Health Canada’s Vaping Products Scientific Advisory Board, Canada’s Tobacco Endgame Summit (whose objective of “less than 5% tobacco prevalence by 2035” has been adopted by the Canadian Government), WHO Expert Group on COVID-19 and Tobacco Use, and the Expert Group on FCTC Articles 9/10 (Tobacco Product Regulation). Dr. Fong is also a member of the Scientific Leadership Team that created US FDA’s Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Project.
Dr. Fong has received a number of Canadian and international awards, including the 2009 Top Canadian Achievement in Health Research from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Canadian Medical Association Journal; the 2011 CIHR Knowledge Translation Award; the 2013 WHO World No Tobacco Day Award for his international work advancing the FCTC; the 2015 global Luther L. Terry Award for Outstanding Research Contribution from the American Cancer Society; the 2017 Policy Impact Award from the American Association of Public Opinion Research (AAPOR); the 2019 Medal of Honour from the Health Research Foundation (Dr. Fong is the 27th recipient of this award, which was first presented in 1945 to Sir Alexander Fleming, the discoverer of penicillin); the 2019 John Slade Award from the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT) for outstanding contributions to public health and tobacco control through science-based public policy, the 2020 O. Harold Warwick Prize for outstanding achievements in cancer control research from the Canadian Cancer Society, and the 2021 Governor General’s Innovation Award, an award that “encompasses all sectors of Canadian society” and is given to “individuals, teams and/or organizations whose innovations are truly exceptional, transformative, and positive in their impact on quality of life in Canada.” Dr. Fong is a fellow of several scientific societies including the Royal Society of Canada, the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, SRNT, and the Association for Psychological Science. In December 2021, Dr. Fong was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Canada. In 2023, the University of Waterloo conferred on Dr. Fong the designation of University Professor in recognition of his “exceptional scholarly achievement and international pre-eminence.”