In October 2007, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) published 'Guidelines for Behaviour change at population, community and individual levels' (National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence. Behaviour change at population, community and individual levels (Public Health Guidance 6), 2007, from http://www.nice.org.uk/Guidance/PH6). This article provides a brief overview of, and introduction to, the guidance focussing on three of its recommendations. First, the guidance outlines skills and competencies required by those involved in the design and evaluation of behaviour change interventions (BCIs). Second, it specifies a series of key psychological change targets which should be considered in interventions intended to change individual behaviour. Third, it highlights the need to plan intervention design and evaluation so that intervention components or techniques are linked directly to causal process which account for change. In addition, the guidance outlines a research agenda. Based on an analysis of the limitations of the available evidence base, research recommendations advise researchers on how to improve the quality of research into BCIs (including evaluations) and thereby advance the science of behaviour change.