Portugal Country Drug Report 2018

Drug-related research

Both the National Plan for the Reduction of Addictive Behaviours and Dependences 2013-20 and the General-Directorate for Intervention on Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies (SICAD) Action Plan for 2013-16 include the topics of monitoring, research and the evaluation of results at national and international levels. Indeed, the National Plan for the Reduction of Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies 2013-2020 defines the following research priorities: (i) invest in standardised data collection and in the development of scientifically proven indicators at European and international levels, considered relevant to the policies adopted; (ii) promote a culture of registration, monitoring and evaluation of interventions — based on common metadata and appropriate instruments, and a culture of sharing the results, in order to maximise the effectiveness of their use; (iii) promote research and enhance the exchange and transfer of knowledge, ensuring the strengthening of synergies and preventing the duplication of resources; (iv) improve the ability to detect and evaluate emerging trends likely to pose a risk to public health and security, enhancing networking and the intersectoral cooperation at national and international levels; and (v) ensure the transmission and more effective application of information and knowledge for the development of policies and their evaluation.

In 2016, a national survey on drug use and addictive behaviours among 18-year-olds and research on the effects of dissuasion interventions, and other studies which focused on young offenders in custody and on participants at a music festival, were carried out by the EMCDDA’s Portuguese national focal point.

Academic research has been carried out across all topic areas, but recent drug-related studies implemented or funded by SICAD mainly focus on aspects related to prevalence, incidence and patterns of drug use and epidemiology.

SICAD uses its website, reports, national scientific journals, scientific meetings and seminars as its main dissemination channels for drug-related research findings. A list of scientific publications (scientific papers, reports and academic theses) in the areas of illicit drugs, alcohol and addictive behaviours is available on SICAD’s website

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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.