PhD student: Henri Dehove

Title: A participatory approach to support students in modifying their eating habits

Supervisors: Alice Bellicha and Sandrine Péneau

Doctoral school: Galilée – Science, Technology, Health

Promotion: 2023-2026

Funding: Galilée doctoral school thesis grant

Thesis abstract:

The university period is characterised by a high prevalence of food insecurity, poor adherence to nutritional recommendations, irregular eating patterns and a significant weight gain. However, the data available in France are limited and do not provide a detailed description of the eating habits of the university student population.

Despite these findings, few nutritional interventions targeting this population have been evaluated. Their implementation and the involvement of the various stakeholders concerned are also insufficiently described. There is therefore a need to identify which intervention strategies are likely to improve students’ eating habits, which is the main objective of this thesis. This participatory research project is based on a combination of quantitative, qualitative and deliberative approaches.

The first objective is to carry out a quantitative study of the eating habits of the USPN student population and to identify the associated individual, interpersonal and environmental factors. The NutriNet-Santé cohort study platform will be used for data collection.

The second objective is to better understand the resources mobilised by students who manage to adopt health-promoting eating behaviours. Semi-structured individual interviews will be conducted.

The third objective is to define interventions aimed at improving USPN students’ access to health-promoting food through a deliberative Student Citizen Assembly (SCA). Semi-structured interviews will be used to assess the experience of SCA members and the impact on their eating habits. The intervention proposals put forward by the SCA will be analysed according to nutrition and public health intervention models.


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