Nudging and pricing in supermarket setting.

Aim project: To investigate the effects of nudging and pricing in a supermarket setting, combined with a mobile physical activity app, on energy balance-related behaviours and cardiometabolic risk factors in adults with low socioeconomic status.

Targeting the environment in which health behaviour choices are made can reduce cardiometabolic risk. Supermarkets form one of the most important point-of-choice settings with the potential to directly influence purchasing behaviors. ‘Nudges’ (small environmental encouragements) target the quick, automatic choices and do not require conscious decision making, and pricing strategies can seduce consumers to buy healthier alternatives. Such environmental cues can make it easier to initiate and maintain a healthy lifestyle, and as such, to improve cardiometabolic health. In addition, the use of theory-based mobile applications is an effective way to provide tailored and context-specific feedback on physical activity behaviors through the stimulation of ‘goal setting’ and ‘self-management’.

We will investigate the effects of this approach on dietary behaviours, physical activity and established cardiometabolic risk factors in adults with a lower SES. Using principles from Participatory Action Research and systems thinking, we will consult with the relevant stakeholders to explore options for upscaling and further implementation in society. Outcomes will provide policy- and practice relevant evidence with clear, stepwise and realistic leverage points for helping individuals to maintain healthy behaviors and improve their cardiometabolic health by making the healthy choice the easy choice.


Role of research group in this project: Joline Beulens (PI of this project), Jeroen Lakerveld and Joreintje Mackenbach form the coordinating team of Supreme Nudge. Further, Joline Beulens, Jeroen Lakerveld, Joreintje Mackenbach and Femke Rutters are involved in the supervision of the PhD students in Supreme Nudge.

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