Testing the impact of interventions to encourage consumption of lower-alcohol or lower-calorie alcoholic drinks
Supervisors: Dr Rachel Pechey; Professor Susan Jebb
Alcohol use represents one of the largest contributors to premature death and preventable diseases worldwide. Alcohol consumption can harm health through the effects of alcohol itself or indirectly contributing to obesity through overconsumption of energy.
In 2020, the UK government committed to a consultation on mandatory calorie labelling of alcoholic drinks. At the same time, lower ABV products are becoming more widely available, and could help to reduce consumption of alcohol. Given the potential public health benefits of encouraging consumers to switch to lower ABV and/or lower calorie products, further work in understanding the impact of interventions targeting these products would be beneficial.
This project aims to contribute to the field by:
- Conduct experimental studies using a virtual online supermarket to study the intended purchasing of lower ABV and/or lower calorie products when different intervention strategies (e.g. labels, positioning) are implemented
- Where possible, collaborate with retailers to design and test interventions in bars/restaurants or in stores (building on existing partnerships with the University) or using loyalty card data
- Or, using digital technologies (e.g. smartphone app) to test the effectiveness of individual-level interventions to support lower alcohol consumption (e.g. labelling, lower ABV swaps)
- Examine the effectiveness of tested interventions by indicators of socioeconomic position, to assess potential impact on health inequalities
This project will suit someone with some experience or training in study design and statistical analysis, with an interest in alcohol consumption or diet. The project will provide training in designing and evaluating experimental studies and trials of interventions, as well as building collaborations, and public health policy.