Sep 11

Behavioural Insights Research Programme

  • Open call for original research on behavioural interventions in health care.
  • £1.8 million available to support up to eight multidisciplinary research teams to generate new knowledge of what can motivate people to act in more efficient and less wasteful ways.
  • Each project will receive between £150,000 and £350,000 for research completed over two to three years.

Our Behavioural Insights Research Programme aims to support research over a two to three year timeframe that designs, tests and evaluates behavioural interventions that can improve efficiency and reduce waste within health care services in the UK.

The programme also seeks to support research that increases our understanding of how to better implement and spread behavioural interventions in a UK health care context.

We are inviting researchers to submit ideas rooted in ‘behavioural insights’ or ‘nudge theory’ across three key areas of interest:

  • Patient pathways eg. improving patient flow within the system, improving coordination and transfer of care, as well as expediting discharge.
  • Procurement, pharmacy and medicines optimisation eg. minimising cost and waste in procurement and prescribing, as well as improving medication adherence.
  • Care best practice eg encouraging attendance, uptake of screening and health promotion by making every contact count; reducing unnecessary or ineffective care; better demand management and reducing harms.

We plan to work with and support multidisciplinary research-led teams that demonstrate strong collaborations between academics and researchers in psychology and behavioural economics, health care professionals, support-staff and managers, patients and those with design expertise to: strengthen our understanding of the potential for low cost behavioural interventions in improving quality, testing different approaches across different settings and services to examine how interventions work and for whom, in what circumstances and provide lessons on spread in a UK health care services context.

More information on the programme aims and funding priorities are available in the Notes for applicants.

How to apply

To apply, you must complete an online research proposal application form using our application system AIMS.

Please read the Application form guidance and Frequently asked questions and Notes for applicants before you begin your application.

Key dates

  • Friday 20 October 2017 (12.00pm) – Deadline to submit proposals. The online application portal will not accept submissions after this time.
  • 30 November 2017 – Longlisting of proposals. Longlisted proposals will then be externally peer reviewed.
  • 19 January 2018 – Shortlisting will be completed. Shortlisted proposals will be invited to attend an interview at our London offices.
  • 19 – 20 February 2018 – Interviews for research grants will take place. Please ensure that you are available for interview on these dates, as we are unable to offer applicants alternative interview dates.


If you have queries about the application process please email in the first instance. We will endeavour to reply within five working days.

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