The evidence base for behaviour change interventions in the field of public health
In recent years increasing attention has been given by policy makers and others in the UK to the insights of behavioural science and the extent to which they can be relied upon to help the UK secure its public health objectives. At this meeting the Forum considered the evidence now available on the effectiveness of behaviour change interventions. Professor Theresa Marteau, Director of the Behaviour and Health Research Unit at Cambridge University, spoke about a scoping review of the evidence that the unit had recently completed which has provided an indication of where there is promise in terms of effective interventions. Paul Lincoln, Chair of the NICE Behaviour Change Development Group spoke about the review of behaviour change guidance which NICE is now undertaking. Paul also chairs the Responsibility Deal Behaviour Change Network. It is supporting the NICE review and seeking to strengthen the evidence base by encouraging major research funders in the public and private sector to invest in intervention studies and to develop natural experiments as part of the work of the Responsibility Deal and beyond.