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Behaviour Change

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Release Date: Each May

Professional Accreditation: IEMA (as part of MSc)

Lead Organisation: IBERS, Aberystwyth University

Learn how to increase the uptake of new knowledge, ideas, products and policies

We face many challenges in our transition to zero-carbon including adapting behaviours to engage with new knowledge, ideas, products and policies. However, attempts to change people’s behaviours are often unsuccessful, even if they acknowledge that the changes would be beneficial. That’s because people are not really rational! We tend to think we are ‘thinking beings that feel’ but evidence is showing that we are more often ‘feeling beings that think’.

Behavioural insights are increasingly being used to encourage positive behaviour change in relation to the environmental challenges that we face. Whether it’s developing policies to reduce energy consumption, or community projects to reduce food waste, or interventions to encourage recycling, the outcomes can be improved using appropriate behaviour change approaches.

Behavioural insights draw on physiological and psychological research, to develop ways of transforming human action. An understanding of this emerging social science can benefit anyone needing to convey an effective message to a specific sector or the wider public. This module, developed in conjunction with the Aberystwyth Behavioural Insights Interdisciplinary Research Centre, will help you to understand theories of behaviour change and show how they can be applied to a range of situations, with an emphasis on change in the agri-food and environmental sectors.

This module is aimed at policy makers, knowledge exchange professionals, marketing personnel and people managers, community project workers, or, indeed, anyone who wants to understand how behavioural science, which has informed a wide range of disciplines, might be applied to encourage positive behaviour change.

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Qualifications which this Module may be Used Towards

PGCert Nuffield Farming Scholarship Option
MSc Agrifood Innovation Option
MRes Agrifood Innovation Option
Professional Doctorate in BioInnovation Option


Kate Hovers

Part of my work is affecting management changes on farms, behaviour change is crucial.

Kate Hovers Vet -
John Goodwin

It was so different to any other module I have studied that I found it really interesting. It has made me question how I am being manipulated in many areas of life

John Goodwin Farmer -
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Downloadable Resources

Research Proposal Form Brochure