Insights into how social and behavioural sciences can influence project outcomes



Behavioural change is at the heart of efforts to identify, design, and implement effective solutions to the challenges posed by changing environmental conditions. The need for behavioural change to support societal change in response to evolving environmental conditions and priorities remains one of the most pressing issues of our time.

Future Earth Australia (FEA), in partnership with the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel of the Global Environment Facility (STAP/GEF), recently designed and facilitated a two-day workshop with social and behavioural scientists, systems thinkers, and project practitioners with the goal of providing guidance on the behavioral aspects of project design. STAP provided an initial workshop briefing to the GEF. The workshop was attended by participants from a range of disciplines in the social sciences, environmental sciences, and physical sciences and representing a range of geographies. Our report is an extended analysis and synthesis of the discussions held across two days. 

Most environmental challenges are driven by human choices and behaviours. Equally, institutions must be attentive to the important leadership and facilitation role they have in shaping behaviour and choices as they seek solutions. The social and behavioural sciences, as a crucial set of disciplines that can inform such efforts and enable such change, have a vital role to play in both top-down and bottom-up approaches.

To read more about the findings of this report, read the publication here