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  • Blog
  • 11th May 2018

In the frame: how policy choices are shaped by the way ideas are presented

This is the second blog in our Behavioural Government series, which explores how behavioural insights can be used to improve how government itself works. ‘Framing effects’ are when people’s views about something change depending on how it is described. Adopting different frames can greatly affect how people perceive a problem…

  • Blog
  • 2nd May 2018

Behavioural Government: A major new initiative from BIT

Confident about your own decision-making? Take the test. When we present our work or appear on panels, we’re often asked the same question: “But doesn’t government itself suffer from cognitive biases?” It’s an issue close to our hearts, given our origins in government. We first highlighted it in the MINDSPACE…

  • Blog
  • 26th Apr 2018

BBC One Documentary “The Truth About Obesity”, 8pm tonight: tune in

One windy day last September, I found myself standing in a barn near Milton Keynes, watching people eat pork pies. The reason? The BBC had asked us to run an experiment based on our research that people greatly under-report what they eat, and that the problem is getting worse over…

  • Blog
  • 20th Apr 2018

Green means go: how to help patients make informed choices about their healthcare

More than four million people are waiting for specialist care in the NHS. At worst, people can wait more than a year for treatment. In many cases people have the option to choose an alternative, nearby service with shorter waiting times—but do not do so. Why is this? Sometimes people…

  • Blog
  • 6th Mar 2018

20 per cent fewer calories by 2024: the new target from Public Health England

One in three children is leaving primary school overweight or obese. Last week we wrote about the launch of a new programme by Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity that aims to change this fact. Today Public Health England added to the calls for action by revealing that children are consuming…

  • Blog
  • 23rd Aug 2017

Rethinking public health using behavioural science

How could - and should - findings from behavioural science make us approach public health differently? This week, BIT offered a provocative answer to this question in the journal Nature Human Behaviour. It was also a question addressed by over 100 academics and practitioners at a recent workshop organised by…

  • Blog
  • 30th Nov 2016

Going global: A new report on applying behavioural insights to health

This blog is also available in Spanish Testing for diabetes can be a pain. The cheapest and most effective test requires people to fast for up to 10 hours beforehand. And if people lack any symptoms, they may also have little awareness or motivation to get tested in a timely…

  • Academic publication
  • 20th Nov 2016

Seven Ways of Applying Behavioral Science to Health Policy

This chapter sets out seven ways  of applying behavioral science to policy that are not subject to many of the key criticisms leveled at nudging - most notably, that nudges are manipulative and dis-empowering.

  • Blog
  • 11th Nov 2016

The soft drinks levy is working before it has even been applied

Back in March of this year, the government announced the introduction of a soft drinks levy (or 'sugar tax'). At the time, we published a blog pointing out that the levy’s success would depend greatly on how producers responded to it. Although shifting customer purchases is important, we predicted that…

  • Blog
  • 8th Aug 2016

Counting Calories: A new report from BIT on the problems with official statistics on calorie intake, and how they can be solved

Without reliable statistics, we can’t know what progress we are making towards achieving our societal goals. If we are trying to improve educational outcomes, we need to know how pupils are performing. If we want to cut down congestion, we need to understand how busy the roads are. And if…