It is an exciting time for the Network, as we move into a transitional phase of our development! Following our members’ survey, we received unanimous agreement to expand our membership to the wider remit of behavioural and social sciences and public health. After gathering suggestions for a new name, the most popular response was the Behavioural Science and Public Health Network (BSPHN). At our committee meeting in June, we agreed that this was the name we will move forward with. We have updated our constitution accordingly which can be found on our website, along with our annual reports.
In line with this, we have been working closely with key organisations in the fields of health psychology (i.e. the Division of Health Psychology) and public health (i.e. the Faculty of Public Health) and have been a key stakeholder in the development of a Behavioural and Social Science Strategy for Public Health, led by Public Health England (PHE). One aim of this strategy is to develop a ‘community of practice’ for those working across the disciplines to come together to network and share ideas. As we are in the process of re-branding, we hope to facilitate a forum for this. We will keep members informed of these exciting developments via our social media and website. Watch out for the official launch of the BSPHN coming soon!
This edition of Health Psychology and Public Health, will therefore be our last. But as you continue to read in this issue, you will hear of our plans to develop a new journal with this wider focus. I am incredibly happy to announce that Professor Katherine Brown has recently joined our team to take this forward, with the support of Emma Wilson, another new committee member. So welcome to them both, and please do get in touch with your suggestions!
Our Honorary Fellowship now boasts a host of leaders in the fields of health psychology and public health and we hope to be able to facilitate a meeting over the next year with as many as possible to discuss ways that we can support training, career pathways, research, funding and practice across the disciplines.
It was a great honour to welcome two of our Honorary Fellows, Duncan Selbie, Chief Executive of Public Health England and Professor Falko Sniehotta, Director of the Behaviour Change Programme in Fuse (Centre of Excellence for Translational Research in Public Health) as keynote speakers at our 2018 annual conference. This issue embraces the conference theme ‘The Role of Behavioural Science in Public Health: Application and Impact’ with some excellent articles that aim to facilitate fruitful discussions of the benefits of bringing these disciplines together.
To support these discussions further, we will be hosting a CPD event on the 28th September 2018 on ‘Writing for Impact: Publication, Policy and Media’. As with all our events, we will have speakers from both health psychology and public health; on this occasion Professor Jane Ogden and Professor Jim McManus, alongside Rebecca Harkin from Wiley publishers.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who continue to support the Network and our mission to achieve greater integration between health psychology and behavioural science and public health. The committee work tirelessly in the background, and I thank them all, as well as welcoming new faces who have joined our team.
Finally, I would like to warmly invite you to our next annual conference which will be held on the 27th February 2019 with the theme of ‘Health, Wellbeing & Behavioural Science: Building Successful Partnerships’. We have some very exciting speakers for this event, including another of our Honorary Fellows, so please keep an eye out for our updates on social media and come along!
Keep networking, keep smiling…
Angel (Chair HPPHN now BSPHN ☺)