Enhancing the translation of health behaviour change research into practice: A selective conceptual review of the synergy between implementation science and health psychology

Justin Presseau*, Lucie M T Byrne-Davis, Sarah Hotham, Fabiana Lorencatto, Sebastian Potthoff, Lou Atkinson, Eleanor Bull, Alexandra L Dima, Anne van Dongen, David French, Nelli Hankonen, Jo Hart, Gill Ten Hoor, Kristian Hudson, Dominika Kwasnicka, Sanne van Lieshout, Jennifer McSharry, Ellinor K Olander, Rachael Powell, Elaine ToomeyMolly Byrne

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal(Systematic) Review article peer-review

8 Citations (Web of Science)


Health psychology is at the forefront of developing and disseminating evidence, theories, and methods that have improved the understanding of health behaviour change. However, current dissemination approaches may be insufficient for promoting broader application and impact of this evidence to benefit the health of patients and the public. Nevertheless, behaviour change theory/methods typically directed towards health behaviours are now used in implementation science to understand and support behaviour change in individuals at different health system levels whose own behaviour impacts delivering evidence-based health behaviour change interventions. Despite contributing to implementation science, health psychology is perhaps doing less to draw from it. A redoubled focus on implementation science in health psychology could provide novel prospects for enhancing the impact of health behaviour change evidence. We report a Health Psychology Review-specific review-of-reviews of trials of health behaviour change interventions published from inception to April 2020. We identified 34 reviews and assessed whether implementation readiness of behaviour change interventions was discussed. We then narratively review how implementation science has integrated theory/methods from health psychology and related discipline. Finally, we demonstrate how greater synergy between implementation science and health psychology could promote greater follow-through on advances made in the science of health behaviour change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-49
Number of pages28
JournalHealth Psychology Review
Issue number1
Early online date25 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2022


  • Implementation science
  • behaviour change
  • behaviour change wheel
  • intervention development
  • intervention mapping
  • theoretical domains framework

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