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Mike Daube Tobacco Control and Public Health Collection

Professor Mike Daube has been a leader in tobacco control and public health advocacy for over four decades. The Daube collection is a significant collection of published and unpublished material relating to public health policy in the United Kingdom, Australia and internationally.


Emeritus Professor Mike Daube AO was born in Cambridge in 1948 and spent most of his early life in Oxford, before graduating from Reading University. After an early stint as a management trainee with the National Coal Board, his career in advocacy started in 1970 with SHELTER, the National Campaign for the Homeless.

In 1973 he commenced working with Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), where he was the first full-time Director (and described in a tobacco industry magazine as “an earnest, dogmatic young man”, followed by a position as Senior Lecturer in Health Education in the Department of Community Medicine at the University of Edinburgh, where he continued his work on tobacco, as well as other public health issues. Following his move to Australia, he was described in a British Medical Journal editorial as “probably Britain’s pre-eminent health campaigner”.

He moved to Western Australia in 1984 as Executive Director of Health Promotion and Education Services at the Department of Health, followed by other senior roles in government. In 2001 he was appointed as the first Director General of the newly combined Health Department in Western Australia. He was also Chair of the National Public Health Partnership.

In 2005 he commenced as Professor of Health Policy at Curtin University where he was also Director of the Public Health Advocacy Institute and the McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth. His other roles included President of the Public Health Association of Australia, President of the Australian Council on Smoking and Health, and co-chair of the National Alliance for Action on Alcohol.

In 2008, Professor Daube was appointed by Minister for Health Nicola Roxon to the National Preventative Health Taskforce. In response to recommendations of the Taskforce’s Tobacco Committee, which he chaired, in November 2012 Australia became the first country in the world to implement the plain packaging of tobacco products. He has published widely and worked on tobacco and other issues for WHO, governments and health organisations in more than 40 countries.

Professor Daube was awarded an AO (Officer in the Order of Australia) in 2014, and named the West Australian of the Year 2018-2019. In 2018 he was awarded the title of Emeritus Professor by Curtin University.

About the Collection

The Collection was donated to the University Library by Professor Daube in September 2015.

The records comprise documents gathered by Professor Daube while working on tobacco control and public health advocacy campaigns in the United Kingdom, Australia and internationally.

Significant in the collection is a quantity of research material relating to the development of tobacco control legislation in Western Australia. The research outputs of The National Centre for Research into Prevention of Drug Abuse at Curtin University are also strongly represented.

The collection also contains examples of public health advocacy promotion materials in languages other than English.

Along with his collection of papers, Professor Daube donated a library of approximately 400 books, booklets and periodicals which can be found on the Curtin University Library catalogue.

The collection is available on request at the John Curtin Prime Ministerial Library.