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Faculty Member

Robert Mitchell Schwartz PhD

Email Address(es)
Office Phone
Office Address
Health Sciences Building 155 College St., Rm 540. Toronto, ON M5T 3M7
Ontario Tobacco Research Unit, CIHR Strategic Training Program in Public Health Policy, Collaborative Program in Public Health Policy, Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation
Centre for Global Health
Social & Behavioural Health Sciences Division
SGS Status
Full Member
Appointment Status
Non budgtry Crss

Research Interests

  • public health policy
  • tobacco control policy and evaluation
  • accountability mechanisms and their impacts
  • integrated chronic disease prevention
  • performance measurement, balanced score cards, program evaluation, performance auditing
  • evaluating complex strategies and policy initiatives
  • food policy and evaluation
  • government third sector relations: implications for policymaking and accountability
  • crises, accountability and policy change
  • evidence-based policy
  • assuring the quality of evaluative information

Education & Training History

1997 Ph.D. (Public Policy and Administration) Hebrew University of Jerusalem

1988 M.A. (Public Administration and Public Policy) Hebrew University of Jerusalem

1982 B.A. (Economics and Political Science) University of Toronto

Primary Teaching Responsibilities

  • Public Health Policy CH5300H
  • Approaches and Tools for Public Health Policy Analysis and Evaluation CH5308

Professional Summary & Appointments


Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Institute of Health Policy Management and Evaluation

Executive Director and Principal Investigator, Ontario Tobacco Research Unit, University of Toronto

Senior Scientist, Centre for Addicition and Mental Health

Director, Collaborative Program in Public Health Policy

Editor-in-Chief, Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation

Affiliated Faculty, School of Public Policy and Governance, University of Toronto


Editor, Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation

Program Director, Collaborative Program in Public Health Policy

Co-Chair, Steering Committee for Canadian National Tobacco Endgame Initiative

Smoke-Free Ontario Scientific Advisory Committee (member)

Member, Tobacco Control System Committee, Ministry of Health and Long-term Care

Honours & Awards

2016 University College’s 2016 Alumni of Influence Award
2012 The John Hastings Award for Excellence in Service to the University and the Community, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto
2010 J.E. Hodgetts Award for the best article published in Canadian Public Administration in 2009
2005 Beryl Radin Award for the best article published in Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory (JPART) in 2004.

Current Research Projects

  • Evaluation & Monitoring of the Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy (several evaluation research projects). Ontario Tobacco Research Unit
  • Evaluation of Ontario’s Menthol Cigarette Ban. NIH
  • Approaches to Accountability in Public Health. CIHR
  • RECIG: Research on E-Cigarettes. Health System Research Fund
  • RETRAC: Research on Commercial Tobacco Reduction in Aboriginal Communities. Health System Research Fund
  • RETRAC2: Research on Commercial Tobacco Reduction in Aboriginal Communities. CIHR

Representative Publications

Price A, Schwartz R, Cohen J, Scott F, Manson H. Implementing Accountability and Performance Management in Public Health: An Examination of Ambiguity and Conflict, Health Policy

Malas M, van der Tempel J, Schwartz R, Lightfoot C, Noormohamed A, Minichiello A, Zawertailo L, Ferrence R. Electronic Cigarettes for Smoking Cessation: A Systematic Review, Nicotine & Tobacco Research doi: 10.1093/ntr/ntw119, April 25, 2016

Schwartz R and Deber R. The performance measurement–management divide in public health, Health Policy, Volume 120, Issue 3, March 2016, Pages 273–280

Kirst M, Kolar K, Chaiton M, Schwartz R, Emerson B, Hyshka E, Jesseman R, Lucas P, Solomon R, Thomas G. A Common Public Health Oriented Policy Framework for Cannabis, Alcohol and Tobacco in Canada? Canadian Journal of Public Health Vol. 6 No. 8 November/December 2015  10.17269/cjph.106.5206

Schwartz R and Zhang B, Debunking the Taxation–Contraband Tobacco Myth, Canadian Medical Association Journal (in press); January 18, 2016, cmaj.150492

Minichiello A, Lefkowitz A, Firestone M, Smylie J K, Schwartz R. Effective strategies to reduce commercial tobacco use in Indigenous communities globally: A systematic review, BMC Public Health (in press), January 11, 2016 BMC Public Health.2016, 16:21; DOI: 10.1186/s12889-015-2645-x; URL:

Dubray J, Schwartz R, Chaiton M, O’Connor S. The Effect of MPOWER on smoking prevalence. Tobacco Control  2015, 24 (6) 540-542.

Chaiton M, Schwartz R. Reducing the burden of tobacco: what’s the endgame? Israel Journal of Health Policy Research 2014, 3(1):36.

Schwartz R, Price A, Deber RB, Manson H, Scott, F. Hopes and Realities of Public Health Accountability Policies Healthcare Policy  2014, 10:79-89

Yates E, Dubray J, Schwartz R, Kirst M, Lacombe-Duncan A, Suwal J, Hatcher J.  Patterns of cigarillo use among Canadian young adults in two urban settings Canadian Journal of Public Health 2014, 105(1):e11-e14.

Borland T, Babayan A, Irfan S, Schwartz R, Exploring the adequacy of smoking cessation support for pregnant and postpartum women. BMC Public Health, 2013; 13:472

Rosen LJ, Rier DA, Connolly G, Oren A, Landau C, & Schwartz R, Do Health Policy Advisors Know What the Public Wants? An Empirical Comparison of Public Preferences Regarding Smoke-free Air with Health Policy Advisor Assessments of Same Israel Journal of Health Policy Research 2013; 2:2

Kirst ML, Schwartz R. Promoting a smokers’ quitline: An evaluation of an academic detailing approach. Health Promotion International 2013; 6:20

Bondy S, Victor JC, Diemert L, Mecredy G, Chaiton M, Brown KS, Cohen J, McDonald P, Ferrence R, Garcia J, Selby P, Schwartz R. Transitions in smoking status over time in a population-based panel study of smokers.  Nicotine & Tobacco Research 2013;15(7);1201-10

Schwartz R. Public Service Morals and Ethics: Thin/Thick Dilemmas in Routine and Critical Situations. In: Ghere R, Fredrickson G, eds Ethics in Public Management, ME Sharpe, 2013; 42-58

Sornpaisarn B, Shield K, Cohen J, Schwartz R, Rehm J.Elasticity of alcohol consumption, alcohol-related harms, and drinking initiation in low- and middle-income countries: a systematic review and meta-analysis. International Journal of Alcohol and Drug Research 2012, 2(1); 45-58

Rosen L, Rier D, Schwartz R, Oren A, Kopel A, Gevman A, Zeller M, Connolly G. Public support for smoke-free areas in Israel: A case for action, Health Policy 2012; 106:161-168

Schwartz R, Pais G. Challenges of Evaluating Comprehensive Complex Tobacco Control Strategies. Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation 2012; 24(3): 1-24

Schwartz, R. Bridging the Performance Measurement-Management Divide? Special Issue ed. Accountability in the Obama Administration: Lessons from Practice and Research. Public Performance & Management Review 35 (1), 103-107. 2011

Forss K, Marra M, Schwartz R. (eds). Evaluating the Complex: Attribution, Contribution, and Beyond. New Brunswick NJ: Transaction, 2011.

Schwartz, R, Johnson, T. Problems, Policies and Politics: A comparative case study of contraband tobacco from the 1990s to the present in the Canadian context. Journal of Public Health Policy 31(3) (2010) 342-354

Dubray J, Schwartz R. Association between Tobacco Vendor Non-compliance with Youth Access and Point of Sale Restrictions. Tobacco Control 19(2) (2010): 171.

Schwartz, R. Public management theory, evaluation and evidence-based policy. In: Leeuw F, Vassen J, eds. Mind the Gap: Perspectives on Policy Evaluation and the Social Sciences. Transaction, 2010.

Robert Schwartz and Allan McConnell. Do Crises Help Remedy Regulatory Failures? A Comparative Study of the Walkerton Water and Jerusalem Banquet Hall Disasters. Canadian Public Administration, 52(1) (2009) 91-112

Dubray JM, Schwartz RM, Garcia JM, Bondy SJ, Victor JC. Vendor compliance with Ontario’s tobacco point of sale legislation. Canadian Journal of Public Health 100(2) (2009) 100-112

Luk R, Cohen JE, Ferrence R, McDonald PW, Schwartz R, Bondy SJ. Prevalence and correlates of purchasing contraband cigarettes on First Nations reserves in Ontario, Canada. Addiction (2009) 104: 488-495

Robert Schwartz, ‘Regulatory Ethics in Practice and Theory’ Public Integrity 10 (1) (2007-8) 37-52

Robert Schwartz and Bruce Rosen, “Bringing Data to Bear: The Politics of Evidence-Based Health Policymaking”, Public Money and Management 24(2) (2004): 121-128

Robert Schwartz and John Mayne, “Assuring the Quality of Evaluation: Theory and Practice”, Evaluation and Program Planning. 28 (1) (2005), 1-14

Robert Schwartz and Raanan Sulitzeanu-Kenan, “Managerial Values and Accountability Pressures: Challenges of Crisis and Disaster”, Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory 14(1) (2004):79-102

Robert Schwartz, “Managing Government-third Sector Collaboration: Accountability, Ambiguity and Politics”, International Journal of Public Administration 24 (11) (2001): 1161-1188

Robert Schwartz, “School Accountability – An Elusive Policy Solution: The Israeli Experience in Comparative Perspective”, Journal of Public Policy 20 (2) (2000) :195-218

Robert Schwartz and John Mayne (Eds.) Quality Matters: Seeking Confidence in Evaluation, Auditing and Performance Reporting. (Transaction, New Brunswick NJ: 2005)