Real World Behavioural Science

24. Angel Chater, Professor of Health Psychology & Behaviour Change & Falko Sniehotta, Professor of Behavioural Medicine & Health Psychology

November 09, 2021 Stu King
Real World Behavioural Science
24. Angel Chater, Professor of Health Psychology & Behaviour Change & Falko Sniehotta, Professor of Behavioural Medicine & Health Psychology
Show Notes

Professor Angel Chater is a Chartered Psychologist, Associate Fellow of The British Psychological Society and a Health & Sport & Exercise Psychologist with the Health & Care Professionals Council. She is a Professor in Health Psychology and Behaviour Change at the University of Bedfordshire, where she leads the centre in health, wellbeing and behaviour change. She is also an Honorary Senior Lecturer in Health Psychology and Behavioural Medicine at UCL and past Chair of the British Psychological Society Division of Health Psychology and passionate about the scientific application of health psychology to public health and its role in intervention design.  

Professor Falko Sniehotta is Director of the NIHR Policy Research Unit for Behavioural Science, past President of the European Health Psychology Society, associate editor of The Health Psychology Review and member of the editorial board of Psychology & Heath and British Journal of Health Psychology. His work is recognised through honorary fellowships at the Academy of Social Science, the European Health Psychology Society, the American Psychological Association and the UK Behavioural Science in Public Health Network. His international research programme aims at developing and testing interventions to change behaviours relevant to health and healthcare. 

A multidisciplinary opportunity…

Professor Sniehotta explains the implied idea that behavioural science and medicine are both multidisciplinary areas, not necessary distinctly different, and how the terms have been adapted through the years away from the medical to understanding in the way of behaviour. Both he and Professor Chater discuss the exciting opportunities that come from collaboration across the disciplines, how 'coming out of the ivory towers' of Universities can extend science in this way and make real positive change. 

Changing the conversation…

Professor Chater explains times in her career where behaviour change work has had a direct, positive impact on people and populations from both a lobbying perspective and a research perspective, with the the Active Herts programme as a successful example of how behaviour change research helped develop a programme to encourage physical activity.  

Examples of ‘Bench to Bedside’ translation…

From this Professor Sniehotta adds about his ‘bench to bedside’ work with Professor Roy Taylor, Professor of Medicine and Metabolism at Newcastle University, to understand how to deliver an intervention that is powerful enough to achieve substantial weight loss in people living with Type-II Diabetes and how to implement this in primary care practices which has been a great success.  

Teaching the foundations of behavioural science at schools…

Stu and Angel debate the benefits that could arise as adults if we had learnt the foundations of behavioural science and health psychology as children at school. Could this limit those engaging in negative behaviours when they’re older? Could this tear down more barriers to leading healthier, happier lifestyles as adults?

Falko expands on this by adding that to make real changes there are often three issues; funding, the narrative and the methods.

Professor Angel Chater: Twitter / Linkedin

Professor Falko Sniehotta: Twitter / Linkedin