Project

Back to overview

Time and Ties: Dynamic modelling of temporal patterns in dyadic health behaviour change

English title Time and Ties: Dynamic modelling of temporal patterns in dyadic health behaviour change
Applicant Scholz Urte
Number 197471
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Sozialpsychologie Psychologisches Institut Universität Zürich
Institution of higher education University of Zurich - ZH
Main discipline Psychology
Start/End 01.08.2021 - 31.07.2025
Approved amount 676'344.00
Show all

Keywords (7)

agent-based modelling; physical activity; health behaviour; couples; dyads; time; temporal dynamics

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Das Ändern von Verhaltensweisen, z.B. sich mehr bewegen, kann das Risiko verschiedener schwerer Erkrankungen verringern. Das Projekt untersucht, wie solche Verhaltensänderungen möglichst effektiv und effizient erreicht werden können. Dabei wird berücksichtigt, dass Lebenspartner:innen gegenseitig ihr Verhalten stark beeinflussen, und dass sich Gedanken, Gefühle und Umstände laufend und im Wechselspiel mit dem/der Partner:in verändern.
Lay summary

Ziele des Forschungsprojekts

Das Projekt untersucht, wie sich Massnahmen zur Verhaltensänderung über die Zeit und im Austausch mit dem/der Partner:in entwickeln, um so zu bestimmen, welche Massnahmen zu welchen Zeitpunkten für welche Paare am erfolgversprechendsten sind. In der ersten Phase des Projekts wird mit einer Smartphone-App die Bewegung von Paaren und weitere Informationen fortlaufend analysiert und entsprechend Massnahmen auslöst. Aus den aufgezeichneten Entwicklungen wird ein Computer-Modell abgeleitet, welches im zweiten Schritt mit Simulationen untersucht wird. Zuletzt werden in einer grösseren Studie mehr Daten erhoben und das Modell damit getestet.

Wissenschaftlicher und gesellschaftlicher Kontext des Forschungsprojekts

Die Rolle anderer Personen bei einer Verhaltensänderung und die zeitlichen Entwicklungen dabei sind noch kaum erforscht. Diese Forschungslücke wird im vorliegenden Projekt angegangen. Gesellschaftlich sind individuelle Verhaltensweisen oft von grosser Bedeutung. So können durch mehr Bewegung Herz-Kreislauf-Erkrankungen, welche die führenden Todesursachen in der Schweiz und weltweit sind, reduziert werden. Das Projekt trägt dazu bei, wirksamere Massnahmen zur Verhaltensveränderung bei Individuen und Paaren zu entwickeln.  

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 16.06.2021

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
183251 Feasibility of a digital protocol to monitor and predict suicidal ideation 01.12.2018 Digital Lives
166348 Measuring the Impact of Social Support and Common Dyadic Coping on Couple’s Dyadic Management of Type II Diabetes by a Novel Ambulatory Assessment Application for the Open Source Behavioral Intervention Platform MobileCoach 01.03.2017 Interdisciplinary projects
196405 Predicting the endorsement of preventive behaviors in the context of the Corona virus pandemic: Examining temporal dynamics and the role of risk communication 01.06.2020 Special Call on Coronaviruses
169781 What friends are for: Comparing the effectiveness of an individual planning intervention with collaborative planning 01.04.2017 Project funding
169788 Why does Transformational Leadership Influence Teacher’s Health? - The Role of Received Social Support, Satisfaction of the Need for Relatedness, and the Implicit Affiliation Motive. 01.04.2017 Project funding
192438 Developing a Taxonomy of Dyadic Behavior Change Techniques 01.05.2021 Project funding
124516 Dyadische und Individuelle Regulationsprozesse bei der Entwöhnung von Chronischem Tabakgebrauch (DIRECT) 01.11.2009 Project funding

Abstract

Non-communicable diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases, account for 71% of all deaths globally each year (https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/noncommunicable-diseases). Modifiable health behaviours (e.g., smoking, physical inactivity) play a major causal role in developing these diseases. Thus, effectively changing these kinds of health behaviours is of key importance. Although there is vast empirical research on health behaviour change, interventions demonstrate moderate effectiveness only, and long-term effects are even lower (Michie et al., 2008; Rothman, 2000). This is likely to be related to the neglect in current behaviour change theories of two dimensions central to every behavioural change: time and social ties. Behaviour change is by definition a dynamic, time-bound process. Mainstream behavioural theories, however, fail in specifying who needs what when during a behaviour change attempt (e.g., Scholz, 2019). Moreover, current behaviour change theories neglect social influences on behaviours that go beyond the individual’s subjective perception (e.g., Rothman et al., 2020; Scholz et al., in press). This is in strong contrast to the evidence attesting the importance of close others in general, and of the romantic partner in adults in particular, on people’s health and health behaviours (e.g., Berkman et al., 2000; Jackson et al., 2015). The proposed project’s overall objective is thus to gain a better understanding of the dynamic processes that happen in couples' daily lives during a health behaviour change attempt. This project will develop and test a formal model and thereby promote theory development and provide empirical evidence on how, why, and particularly when dyadic interactions promote success or failure in health behaviour change of individuals as well as of couples.For reaching these aims, this project comprises three sequentially ordered phases, organized in three work packages (WP). In the first WP we will collect experimental, intensive longitudinal data on couple’s changing their physical activity. We will further analyse existing, publicly available data sets on longer-term changes in couples’ health behaviours. These data will provide information for the development of the formal model that will serve theory advancement and will further provide starting values for the computer simulation part of the second WP. In this second WP we will apply agent-based-modelling, a computer simulation method that allows developing and testing precise hypotheses on dynamic interactions between people over time. Results of WP2 will subsequently feed into WP3 in that the theoretical assumptions will be used for developing and testing a time-bound intervention on dyadic behaviour change again focusing on couples changing their physical activity. This intervention in WP3 will, at the same time, be used to evaluate and potentially refine the formal model generated in WP2.The proposed project will make a strong contribution to the field of health behaviour change and particularly dyadic health behaviour change by addressing both the call for developing more precise theories on temporal dynamics and the call for countering the neglect of the social embeddedness of human beings and their (health) behaviours.
-