CBC – University College London


The Centre for Behaviour Change (CBC) is a unique initiative, bringing together a wide range of academic expertise in behaviour change to address key challenges facing society. Behaviour change is increasingly recognised as central to human well-being, social cohesion and sustainability. Bringing about and sustaining behaviour change is a challenging and complex process, requiring theories, methods and evidence from many academic disciplines and close interaction between those generating and using knowledge.  To develop expertise and bring that to the widest possible audience, across the public, commercial and charity sectors, we engage in cutting-edge cross-disciplinary research and host cross-disciplinary events addressing topical social and methodological issues. For instance, we host an annual Behaviour Change Conference on Digital Health and Well-Being, which brings the science of behaviour change, health, and technology expertise across disciplines to all those interested in developing and evaluating digital interventions and products. 

We also provide evidence-based consultancy, and are constantly expanding our consultancy team with the aim to connect UCL-based researchers willing to provide consultancy, sharing information as to what colleagues are doing, and enable connections to be made between UCL-based researchers and external individuals/companies or researchers at other universities. In addition to this, the Centre delivers many types and level of training and teaching and has built communities to facilitate the engagement of policy-makers, practitioners and researchers with relevant academic expertise.

The Centre for Behaviour Change has published several guides on behaviour change and digital interventions, consulted by experts and practitioners of behaviour change theories nationally and internationally. These titles include ABC of Behaviour Change Theories, which describes 83 theories of behaviour and behaviour change, The Behaviour Change Wheel Guide which puts “flesh on the bones” of good practice guidelines, such as the UK’s Medical Research Council’s guidance on how to systematically develop and evaluate complex interventions, and A Guide to Development and Evaluation of Digital Behaviour Change Interventions in Healthcare, which outlines the current state of research around digital behaviour change interventions and provide guidelines for the development of new digital interventions.

Our research has been funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the Medical Research Council (MRC), and the Wellcome Trust.  The centre’s research focuses on understanding and delineating the theoretical underpinnings of behaviour change interventions, with focus on the question ‘What behaviour change interventions works when, where, for whom and why?’. Additionally, we are involved in a range of applied research projects, such as City4Age, in which we put our theoretical understanding to practical use.. We are therefore able to provide up-to-date knowledge and draw upon recent, ground breaking research in our efforts on the City4Age project.