Dr Harriet Baird
Department of Psychology
Lecturer in Psychology
+44 114 222 6519
Full contact details
Department of Psychology
1 Vicar Lane
I am a social psychologist with interests in self-regulation and behaviour change, particularly with respect to health and environmental behaviours. I am a member of the Social and Behaviour Change Research Cluster in the Department of Psychology, and my research has links with The Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures. I completed my BSc. in Psychology at the University of Manchester in 2011, followed by my MSc. in Psychological Research at the University of Sheffield in 2012. I then worked as a research assistant, gaining experience of experimental techniques across different fields of psychology, including NHS- and industry-based research. I obtained my PhD from the University of Sheffield in 2018. After my PhD, I worked as a post-doctoral research associate at the University of Sheffield, where I worked on a number of large, interdisciplinary research projects exploring how we can reduce plastics waste (Plastics: Redefining Single-Use) - and promote the use of reusable packaging systems (Many Happy Returns) – and on a project that seeks to develop a set of tools that will enable people to understand the relationship between different behaviours (TURBBO project). I started my lectureship at the University of Sheffield in May 2022.
- Research interests
I have interests and expertise in self-regulation – how people direct their thoughts, feelings, and behaviours in order to achieve their goals – and in the design, application, and evaluation of interventions designed to promote positive and lasting changes in people’s behaviour. My research uses theoretical models of behaviour (e.g., control theory, COM-B model, theory of planned behaviour) in order to understand why people’s efforts to self-regulate are sometimes compromised and how this process can be promoted. I collaborate with a range of stakeholders in order to understand behaviour in different contexts and I am passionate about collaborating on interdisciplinary research projects, where global challenges are considered from multiple perspectives and solutions are informed by a wide range of expertise.
I am currently involved in three lines of research:
• I am working with scientists across the university on a project that seeks to reduce the impact that plastic waste is having on the environment. My research seeks to understand people’s attitudes and behaviours towards plastic, and we are testing strategies and interventions designed to promote the use of reusable packaging and containers. I am also collaborating with colleagues from the School of Dentistry exploring the publics’ attitudes towards sustainability in healthcare, and their willingness to make sacrifices for more sustainable healthcare services.
• I am working with psychologists and computer scientists to develop a set of tools to allow people (e.g., academics, practitioners) to explore the relationship between different behaviours. While the relationship between some behaviours may be intuitive (e.g., the relationship between different health behaviours), others may be less intuitive (e.g., whether health behaviours are associated with pro-environmental behaviours). Such tools will allow users to test a wide range of hypotheses about how (and when) different behaviours are related.
• I am interested in how individual differences (e.g., in people’s time perspective) influence people’s behaviour and goal outcomes.
- Reducing plastic waste: a meta-analysis of influences on behaviour and interventions. Journal of Cleaner Production, 380.
- Author Q&A: Harriet Baird. British Dental Journal, 233(7), 559-559.
- Exploring attitudes towards more sustainable dentistry among adults living in the UK. British Dental Journal, 233(4), 333-342. View this article in WRRO
- This has already been used! A paradigm to measure the point at which people become unwilling to use reusable containers. Journal of Cleaner Production, 363(Journal of Business Research 30 1994), 132321.
- Many happy returns: combining insights from the environmental and behavioural sciences to understand what is required to make reusable packaging mainstream. Sustainable Production and Consumption, 27, 1688-1702. View this article in WRRO
- Understanding the effects of time perspective: A meta-analysis testing a self-regulatory framework. Psychological Bulletin, 147(3), 233-267. View this article in WRRO
- The Relationship Between a Balanced Time Perspective and Self-monitoring of Blood Glucose Among People With Type 1 Diabetes. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 53(2), 196-209. View this article in WRRO
- The relationship between time perspective and self-regulatory processes, abilities and outcomes: a protocol for a meta-analytical review. BMJ Open, 7(6). View this article in WRRO
- Does self-control improve with practice? Evidence from a six-week training program.. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 145(8), 1075-1091. View this article in WRRO
- Research group
Social and Behavioural Change
- Teaching activities
PSY1001 and PSY2001 Social Psychology
PSY346 Research Project in Psychology
PSY31005 Using Behavioural Science to tackle Sustainability Challenges
Current PhD Researchers:
- Luthfi Dahriyanto: Using the Behaviour Change Wheel to understand and identify strategies to reduce single-use plastics. Co-supervisor with Nicola Buckland and Rebecca Webster.
- Michael Pan: A multi-method investigation of the associations between family functioning, emotion regulation, and psychosocial outcomes. Co-supervisor with Thomas Webb and Fuschia Sirois (Durham University).
- Professional activities and memberships
I am the Early Career Research Champion for the Department of Psychology and I sit on the Faculty of Science Researcher Development Group.