Blog


The Heywood Foundation

Jeremy Heywood – Cabinet Secretary until only few weeks ago; great champion of behavioural science, What Works, and innovation in government much more widely – was laid to rest on Friday. It was an incredibly moving and beautiful ceremony in the Henry VII chapel in Westminster Abbey. The Prime Minister was of course there – […]

November 29, 2018


Eight years

After eight fantastic years, I will be moving on from the Behavioural Insights Team to embark on six months of parental leave with my young son and daughter. My last day will be this Friday. So I thought I’d take the opportunity to write about the last eight years with the team. What has changed. […]

November 28, 2018


How behavioural insights can improve employment policies and programmes

A job is more than a source of income I graduated from university at the peak of the global financial crisis. Back then, the youth unemployment rate in Italy was over 40%. I vividly remember looking through online job boards, with no more than a handful of vacancies, mostly underpaid internships. After months of unsuccessful […]

November 28, 2018


Monzo and the Financial Capability Lab: a new partnership to help people manage their spending

Making spending decisions in a hot coral state It’s the Money Advice Service’s (MAS) Talk Money Week, and here at the Behavioural Insights Team we’ve been talking about our new partnership with the challenger bank Monzo. Together we’ll be developing and testing new product features to help people use the trademark hot coral card to […]

November 15, 2018


Catching cancer early in Greater Manchester: new trial results

Almost half of the UK population will get cancer during their lifetime. Early diagnosis and treatment are critical for improving cancer survival rates and quality of life, yet one in five cases of cancer is still detected late through emergency hospital admissions. The national cancer screening programmes (breast, cervical and bowel) are designed to catch […]

November 5, 2018


Behavioural science and policy: where are we now and where are we going?

The use of behavioural science in policy has exploded since the publication of Nudge in 2008 and the creation of BIT in 2010. We were asked to reflect on the team’s work for a new issue of Behavioural Public Policy, and we decided to be open about some of the challenges with applying behavioural science […]

November 5, 2018


Helping our public service leaders – the new Centre for Public Services Leadership

In 1997, leaders from Cardiff’s local authority, police, city licensing regulators, an emergency department and a local university met to discuss a problem. Violent crime was increasing in the city at a disturbing rate. Something had to be done. Seven years later, violence-related hospital admissions were down by 35% and serious violence by 42%. Estimates […]

October 29, 2018


Jeremy Heywood

It’s so far back that I can’t even be sure when I first met Jeremy Heywood. Perhaps when trying to sneak a note into the then Prime Minister Tony Blair’s red box that sat on his desk. Or sorting out arrangements for the newly founded (Forward) Strategy Unit. Probably even before that, in the early […]

October 25, 2018


50 years on from the Race Relations Act: can behavioural insights help solve inequality?

Today marks the 50th anniversary of the Race Relations Act 1968. The groundbreaking legislation made it illegal in the UK to discriminate against people based on their colour, race, ethnicity, or national origins, and refuse them housing, employment or public services. It wasn’t until the 1968 Act that the infamous ‘no blacks, no dogs, no […]

October 25, 2018


The rise of returners: New dynamic norm opens door to gender equality in the workplace

Earlier this year, UK companies with 250 employees or more published their Gender Pay Gap (GPG). With a national average of 18% difference in pay between men and women employees, many organisations are now wondering what they can do to close the gap. The lack of women at senior levels drives the GPG for most […]

October 23, 2018