Behavioural Insights research across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough

  • Cambridgeshire County Council
  • 11/05/2023
Researcher, Senior researcher, Advisor, Project lead Health Inequalities Psychological and Behavioural Science Public Policy and Regulation


In Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, there are large numbers of adults and children who are living in poor health due to, in part, modifiable risk factors. This has been exacerbated over the COVID-19 pandemic and covers a wide range of factors such as poor diet/obesity, smoking, harmful alcohol consumption, and vaccination/immunisation uptake for preventable diseases. These factors tend to be more prevalent in less affluent areas leading to a further widening of health inequalities. It is systemic variations in wider determinants of health, such as environmental factors (e.g., living without easy access to fresh food, few green spaces for physical activity, and high volume of junk food advertising) that supports inequalities and leaves an individual’s health outcomes out of their control (1–3). Almost half of the burden of disease in developed countries is attributable to modifiable risk factors such as smoking, harmful alcohol consumption, poor diet, and physical inactivity (4). These risk factors are associated with developing conditions such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and some cancers and can increase the number of years people are living in disability (5). This, in turn, adds pressure on NHS services through both the direct and indirect costs of treating the resulting disease(4,6,7). Public health interventions to date have had limited success in reducing these risk factors. There are many behaviour change programmes and interventions in place aiming to help people be healthier. Whilst these are typically underpinned by evidence and utilise some behaviour change theory, sustaining behaviour change is often challenging, especially when people live in unsupportive environments. For example, most people participating in weight management programmes will regain their lost weight over time; only around 20% successfully maintain their weight loss in the long term (8). Further work is therefore needed to understand the drivers of behaviour at an individual, community and population level to ensure the longevity of positive health outcomes.

Project Type

Consulting - Tender opportunity


GBP 520,000

Application deadline