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Research into young people’s views of food advertising and marketing

ScotCen Social Research has been funded by Cancer Research UK to carry out a research study to find out what young people think about the different ways that food products are marketed.

Before you decide whether or not to take part, we would like you to understand why the study is being done and what would be involved. Please take time to read this information carefully.

Why have I been invited to take part in this research?

You have been invited to take part because you are a young person aged 11-19. We are interested in the opinions of all young people, whatever you like to eat and drink. 

Who is carrying out the research?

This study is been carried out by researchers at ScotCen Social Research. ScotCen is part of the National Centre for Social Research, Britain’s leading centre for independent social research. The study is being funded by Cancer Research UK (CRUK).

What’s involved?

You are invited to take part in an informal online group discussion with 5-6 other young people of a similar age to you. The discussion will last up to 60 minutes and will be led by an experienced researcher from ScotCen who will ask questions and encourage you to talk openly and express your views in your own words. We will talk about the food and drink you like, how it’s marketed and ways in which healthy eating may be encouraged in the future.

There are no right or wrong answers. We’re just interested in hearing what you think.

What will happen to the information I give?

We would like to audio-record the discussion, so we remember what you said. We will not video record the group.

All information collected during the study will be kept strictly confidential. We will not share what you tell us with parents/carers, youth workers, etc. What you tell us will be looked at along with the views of others taking part in the study. No-one will be able to recognise you from any report about the study as you will not be named in any study reports. The audio recordings of the discussions with the researcher will be listened to and transcribed. Only members of the research team at ScotCen will have access to these files and we only use transcription services from our approved supplier list who are compliant with all of ScotCen’s information security policies.

The findings from this research will be used to design the next Youth Obesity Policy Survey, funded by CRUK, and help inform policies about public health and regulating the marketing of foods and diets.

Do I have to take part?

Your views are very important, but it’s up to you whether you take part. The researcher will be sensitive to all the issues raised during the discussion but if you find talking to the researcher makes you anxious or upset, you are free to contribute as much or as little as you wish and will be able to stop the conversation with the researcher at any time without giving a reason. You do not have to answer any question that you feel is too personal or makes you uncomfortable.

How will you deal with my personal information?

We will treat the information you give us in the strictest confidence under the Data Protection Act 2018. You can find out more about how we protect your personal information here.

Where can I find out more?

If you have any questions about the study or want any more information about what it involves, please get in touch with us at