INFLUENCING REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH HABITS
How might we influence habits to decrease maternal & infant mortality rates?
Reproductive Maternal Neonatal & Child Healthcare + Adolescents (RMNCH + A) is the Indian Government's National Health Mission to reduce maternal and infant mortality rates across the country. This project, set in rural Uttar Pradesh focuses on six mini journeys that address crucial behaviors of the four stakeholders of this massive system: households (women + family), facilities (government hospitals), front-line workers (government social activists), and program managers (bureaucrats of the state and national healthcare systems).
We spent over two weeks in the field speaking with the four main stakeholders of the system to understand their key behaviors & mental models in the following six mini journeys:
- Family planning and contraception
- Iron Folic Acid supplements
- Safe delivery
- Baby Survival
- Exclusive breastfeeding
- Healthy baby
Combining the secondary research and primary research led to an immense amount of information. Working in a complex system layered with politics, governmental, and strong culture and tradition led country, it was important to find a clean visual way to understand the information.
Since behavior change addresses the "awareness - action gap", our diagram used it as a filter to explain how we got to our key focus areas of study
validating hypotheses - a research lab through gamification
The research synthesis led us to several hypotheses that could serve as underlying reasons for user decision making and habits. To validate and / or negate these hypotheses, a gamified format was used to open discussion among users. The questioning format of the game was stretched at length to create utmost comfort for our user group. Several iterations of a board game to develop ways to: (a) make sure users understand our questions (b) users feel incentivized enough to be engaged in the game (c) the game provides enough fodder for a rich discussion.
During our initial round of research, we had found local moderators to be very useful -- not only were they well versed in interviewing, users were much more willing to open up to someone who spoke their local dialect, and someone of older age because the project space was a taboo issue. For the gamified research, we decided to bring the moderators back on board and have them run the games and discussions. We spent a week with them in our offices and on field, with several de-brief sessions to help them understand the game and try different ways of running, This intensive week turned out to be most useful where we did 4 more rounds of iterative prototyping to alter discussion formats, game length etc.