Assisting behaviour change in humanitarian programs

This briefing paper lays out a theoretical basis and framework for behaviour change in humanitarian programmes, and practical steps and recommendations to effect practices change.

In recent years, the concept of “behaviour change” and “changing practices” has become an important topic of discussion in the field of humanitarian aid, in particular when we focus on soft interventions and approaches.

Behaviour change (BC) interventions and processes lie implicitly at the core of many humanitarian aid initiatives, in the most diverse operational areas: health-related, nutritional, WASH, child-care, food security-related practices and issues. It can be considered a “cross-cutting” technical approach of analysis and intervention.

This positioning paper is the outcome of this process of questioning and has several objectives:

Focusing the debate and the analysis on some technical aspects regarding the subject.

Presenting the psychosocial perspective of this topic: Behavioural processes were studied in particular by psychological and social sciences which in the last decades produced a considerable body of scientific research on technical issues involved in behaviour structure and management, at the individual and social levels. For this reason we consider important and pertinent the technical input and expertise of psychologists on this discussion regarding assisting practices change.

Proposing a theoretical and practical positioning framework on BC for ACF.


About this document

Section: Technical

Thematic Area: Emergency Response Mental Health and Care Practices

Location: Global

Type: Position Paper

Tags: Behaviour Change

Language: English

Key Information


Year Published: 2013
Want to learn more about this?