SOCIAL AND BEHAVIOR CHANGE
PSI uses a multidisciplinary approach to social and behavior change (SBC) that draws on the tenets of public health, marketing, behavioral economics, and human centered design. This approach moves SBC beyond a communication-only focused approach to one that seamlessly connects the beneficiary’s world with the overall health system and marketplace.
PSI employs a four-step process when developing SBC solutions:
- Design and Prototype
- Deliver and Monitor
- Evaluate and Re-inform.
This process embraces the principle of “collaborate, learn, adapt”, wherein near real-time monitoring occurs throughout, and learnings are immediately applied to enhance and adapt the design.
PSI’s SBC strategies place the beneficiary (i.e., a mother of a child under five, an adolescent girl, a health provider or even a product manufacturer) at the center of our solutions, designing programs in partnership with the intended beneficiaries, not for them. PSI does this by using several unique methodologies and approaches:
Increasing empathy with our beneficiary: From researchers, to programmers, to technical experts, PSI is sending multi-disciplinary teams out to engage with our beneficiaries. PSI teams collect stories and observations that complement traditional research and help keep our beneficiary and their needs and experiences at the center of our program design. Refined research methods, such as mapping the evolution of beneficiary behavior and segmenting beneficiaries by behaviors, rather than simple demographics, are additional ways to understand and empathize with our target audience.
Prototyping: To continually sharpen beneficiary insights, PSI has begun prototyping solutions with our beneficiaries. These rough outlines of a solution are presented to beneficiaries for their feedback and critique. Prototypes represent the very early thinking of a potential solution, whether it be an experience, a product or even a message. It provides something tangible — a story board, a role play, or a physical representation of a product — that helps beneficiaries articulate thoughts and emotions about the problem and its solution that they might not otherwise be able to verbalize. In short, we can build and refine potential solutions as well as continually collect beneficiary insights through the co-creation process of prototyping.
Beneficiary engagement: With more comprehensive engagement, beneficiaries become a part of each and every step of solution design and implementation. Wherever appropriate, PSI engages beneficiaries not just as recipients of a solution but as creators of it, from data collection, to ideation of solutions, to prototyping and refinement. Special trainings and tools ensure that PSI staff create space for beneficiaries to not only participate in solution design, but to lead as appropriate
Through increased empathy with our users and sharpened insights into their lives and needs, PSI is better able to design solutions that motivate healthy behaviors and the use of health products and services.
PSI estimates the impact of our work in years of healthy life added. While proxy measures such as changes in attitude, beliefs or knowledge may be used for some SBC solutions, the ultimate measurement of our success is the behavior change and the health impact that results from it.
In every country where we work, social and behavior change (SBC) solutions are designed, implemented and managed by local teams in collaboration with a wide range of partners, including:
- Program beneficiaries
- National and local experts and officials
- International organizations
- Community-based organizations
PSI acknowledges that our program beneficiaries exist within a complex ecosystem comprised of players at the interpersonal, community, and societal levels. These players influence the beneficiaries’ enabling environment. Through their actions and interactions, each of these players helps or hinders the beneficiaries’ practice of healthy behaviors. Therefore, PSI designs solutions to not only address the individual’s barriers or motivators, but also key influencers within the individual’s socio ecological sphere.
Based on program objectives and beneficiary insights and needs, PSI implements a wide variety of SBC solutions designed to engage and motivate beneficiaries to increase demand for and use of health products, services and behaviors. These solutions include but are not limited to, mass media, peer education, school programs, community theater, mobile multi-media events, interpersonal communication, provider trainings and incentives, and special events.
Adolescents 360 (A360) aims to increase voluntary, modern contraceptive use and reduce unintended pregnancy among adolescent girls between the ages of 15 and 19 in Nigeria, Tanzania and Ethiopia. It does this by reimagining and redefining the way sexual and reproductive health programs are designed and delivered for adolescent girls and young women. This means shifting from a typical model where programmers design programs, to one where youth and adults from a range of disciplines design programs together. A360 brings together human centered design, social marketing, public health, cognitive neuroscience, and socio-cultural anthropology approaches.
Learn more about Adolescent 360.
The PHARE project develops and tests innovative and evidence-based SBC solutions that address barriers to modern contraceptive use, transform attitudes about reproductive health, and promote family planning in West Africa. The project aims to increase demand for family planning products and services; enhance active support for family planning; and address social norms to create an enabling environment for family planning. The project emphasizes the use of effective audience segmentation; social network-based research and programming; provider behavior change; and the integration of reproductive health SBC with activities in non-health sectors such as agriculture and environmental conservation.
Watch some of our mass media campaigns from around the world:
HIV risk perception in India
Birth spacing in Pakistan
Breastfeeding in Pakistan
Abstinence among youth in Kenya
The images below show Jeanine Nizigiyimana, a mother from Burundi, who is educating other mothers in her village on how to protect their children from water-borne diseases.
Photos by: Benjamin Schilling
- Transform/PHARE Project Fact Sheet
Project fact sheet for Transform/PHARE
- HCD Religious Leaders, Volumes I, II and III
Summary of Human Centered Design (HCD) process, to engage Religious Leaders in the Zinder region of Niger
- IVR Pretesting
Interactive Voice Response (IVR) used to pre-test and iterate messages to increase demand for FP.
- National Demand Analysis – Quantitative Study and Target Group Segmentation
Randomized, nationwide representative study of FP needs and analysis of behaviors and attitudes of women.
- National Demand Analysis – Qualitative Assessment
Qualitative analysis of family planning needs in Cote d’Ivoire to inform quantitative research leading to behavioral/attitudinal segmentation.
- Male Engagement Heat Map
A landscaping of family planning interventions targeting men in Burkina Faso
- Burkinabe Men’s Engagement in Family Planning
Summary state of family planning in Burkina Faso as well as the role of men and potential areas for intervention.
- HCD Young Women Benin
The report summarizes the HCD process, describing insights gained from interaction with the target group and opportunity areas, that translated into protoyping ideas.
- 2016 Rural Sanitation and Hygiene Behavioral Study Vietnam
In December 2016, PSI Vietnam conducted a behavioral study among 1,200 rural households in Tien Giang and Dong Thap provinces to assess PSI’s sanitation social marketing program progress and to inform future improvements in coverage and sanitation as well as hygiene behaviors. This study highlights the continuing need for improved sanitation and hand-washing with soap practices among rural families in Vietnam, and identified factors that need to be addressed in order to improve sanitation and hand-washing practices.
- Adolescents360 Project Brochure
Adolescents360 is reimagining and redefining the way sexual and reproductive health programs are designed and delivered for adolescent girls and young women. Check out this brochure to learn more about what makes Adolescents360 exciting and different.