How do regular UK drinkers perceive the strength of different low and high alcohol verbal descriptors on wine and beer?

Wider availability and marketing through the use of explicit labelling of lower strength alcoholic beverages (i.e., products containing lower than average alcohol by volume, for beers or wine) have the potential to reduce alcohol consumption if they attract more people towards these products.

In this study we found that verbal descriptors of lower strength wine and beer formed two clusters and effectively communicated reduced alcohol content. The verbal descriptors Low, Lower, Light, Lighter, and Reduced formed a cluster and were rated as denoting lower strength products than Regular, but higher strength than the cluster with intensifiers consisting of Extra Low, Super Low, Extra Light and Super Light.

For further details on this study, please click the Read more button.

Impact of low alcohol verbal descriptors on perceived strength: An experimental study. Vasiljevic M, Couturier D-L, & Marteau TM, 2017

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We are now recruiting!

The Behaviour and Health Research Unit is now looking for a Research Assistant to assist in researching the effectiveness of interventions in physical environments aimed at changing health-related behaviour in populations.

The successful candidate will:

Assist in running a range of studies being conducted by the Behaviour and Health Research Unit including:

  • A field study designed to evaluate the impact of presenting a fixed volume of alcoholic beverages in different bottle sizes on in-home consumption

Assist in running a field study designed to evaluate the impact on purchasing and consumption in the workplace of a number of interventions, including:

  • Smaller sizes of portions, packages and tableware
    The availability of healthier vs. less healthy foods and drinks
    Calorie labelling.

The closing date for applications is 7th November and interviews will be held on the 14th November. For further details on this post including how to apply click here.

Richard Thaler: Contender for a Nobel Prize in Psychology?

Richard Thaler is an economist that is fluent in Psychology and has just won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Economics. His contribution, as recognised by the awarding committee, has been to apply the psychology of judgement and decision-making to economics. This has not only increased understanding sub-optimal financial decisions but also led to interventions to optimise these. The oft cited example is the Save More Tomorrow scheme in which rather than opting into a retirement saving scheme the default was switched so that employees would opt out. Savings with the latter increased four-fold from 3.5%. His contribution to psychology, less remarked upon, has also been remarkable. By highlighting the failures of subjective expected utility models – which are still the dominant models used in the health field – he drew attention to the many models in psychology that focus instead on habits, situations and non-conscious processes. To read the full blog click on the Read more button.

Recruitment for Behaviour Change by Design – New Wellcome-funded research programme – has begun!

Recruitment for Behaviour Change by Design – New Wellcome-funded research programme – has begun!

Recruitment for the new Wellcome funded research programme (click on read more for further details) being led by Professor Dame Theresa Marteau has now begun. The programme is now recruiting for a Senior Research Associate, and a Research Assistant. To find out further details about either of these posts, then please click on the respective links. Applications can only be accepted via the online recruitment system.

Interviews for these posts will be held on the 7th and the 8th of November respectively.