'Binge' drinking in the UK: a social network phenomenon

Mind and Society 8 (2):135-152 (2009)
In this paper, we analyse the recent rapid growth of ‘binge’ drinking in the UK. This means the rapid consumption of large amounts of alcohol, especially by young people, leading to serious anti-social and criminal behaviour in urban centres. British soccer fans have often exhibited this kind of behaviour abroad, but it has become widespread amongst young people within Britain itself. Vomiting, collapsing in the street, shouting and chanting loudly, intimidating passers-by and fighting are now regular night-time features of many British towns and cities. A particularly disturbing aspect is the huge rise in drunken and anti-social behaviour amongst young females. Increasingly, policy makers in the West are concerned about how not just to regulate but to alter social behaviour. Smoking and obesity are obvious examples, and in the UK ‘binge’ drinking has become a focus of acute policy concern. We show how a simple agent based model approach, combined with a limited amount of easily acquired information, can provide useful insights for policy makers in the context of behavioural regulation. We show that the hypothesis that the rise in binge drinking is a fashion-related phenomenon, with imitative behaviour spreading across social networks, is sufficient to account for the empirically observed patterns of binge drinking behaviour. The results show that a small world network, rather than a scale-free or random one, offers the best description of the data.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11299-009-0058-1
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 15,914
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Robert P. Lawry (2000). Heavy Drinking on Campus. International Journal of Applied Philosophy 14 (2):153-156.
Andrew Cornford (2012). Criminalising Anti-Social Behaviour. Criminal Law and Philosophy 6 (1):1-19.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

15 ( #171,927 of 1,725,607 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #268,736 of 1,725,607 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.