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Establishing open science research priorities in health psychology

Open Science is an umbrella term of practices aimed at making research more reproducible and transparent. Researchers can incorporate Open Science behaviours across the whole process of research, from pre-registering their study plans in an online repository, making their data and analysis code openly available, and making resulting papers and tools freely available without paywalls.

Health Psychology, as well as all disciplines of science, has much to gain from Open Science practices to enable easier sharing and replication of effective health support strategies and interventions in the real-world. The European Health Psychology Society (EHPS) Open Science Special Interest Group was established in 2019 and comprises a growing number of health psychology researchers across the world passionate about promoting Open Science behaviours.

A core aim of the SIG is to conduct primary research in Open Science and Health Psychology, including this current project. Dr Emma Norris (Brunel University London) and Dr Elaine Toomey (University of Limerick) co-lead the Open Science SIG and this research project.

Research does not currently exist to explore the uptake of Open Science in Health Psychology, nor how to increase uptake. This study uses a systematic approach to identify what research questions are of key importance to active researchers in health psychology.

Using a Delphi priority-setting consensus approach, this study aims to:

  1. Identify priorities for research on Open Science in Health Psychology amongst members of the European Health Psychology Society
  2. Obtain consensus on the top 5 prioritised research questions for Open Science in Health Psychology


The research priorities identified in this research will enable initiatives to be identified to increase uptake of Open Science, both in Health Psychology and in research more generally. More Open research in Health Psychology will enable healthcare professionals and policy-makers to easier and more complete access research into the effectiveness of behaviour change interventions and healthcare strategies. Having access to more Open research will also allow greater reproducibility of health interventions in different global contexts.

Meet the Principal Investigator(s) for the project

Dr Emma Norris
Dr Emma Norris - Dr Emma Norris is a Senior Lecturer in Public Health, within the Department of Health Sciences and Co-Chair of the Health Behaviour Change Research Group. She is Deputy Lead of the Division of Global Public Health and Lead of MSc Public Health and Behaviour Change (online). Dr Norris is a researcher in behaviour change and health psychology, exploring evidence synthesis of behaviour change interventions, as well as development and assessment of physical activity, smoking cessation and digital interventions. Before joining Brunel, Dr Norris was a Research Fellow at the Centre for Behaviour Change at University College London working on the Human Behaviour-Change Project: synthesising published literature on behaviour change using machine learning and Artificial Intelligence. Dr Norris' PhD tested Virtual Field Trips as physically active lesson interventions for primary-school children. Dr Norris is also an advocate for Open Science. She established and Chairs Brunel's Open Research Working Group and is Brunel's UK Reproducibility Network (UKRN) Local Network Lead. She is also interested in designing behaviour change interventions to facilitate Open Science behaviours in researchers. Dr Norris is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA). She is Co-Chair of the European Health Psychology Society’s Open Science Special Interest Group. Emma is an Associate Editor for Health Psychology & Behavioral Medicine and Cogent Psychology. Follow Dr Norris' research and updates on Twitter: @EJ_Norris

Related Research Group(s)

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Health Behaviour Change - Development and evaluation of theory- and evidence-based health behaviour change interventions, across communicable and non-communicable diseases; evidence synthesis of behaviour change interventions.

Partnering with confidence

Organisations interested in our research can partner with us with confidence backed by an external and independent benchmark: The Knowledge Exchange Framework. Read more.

Project last modified 21/11/2023