From Awareness Raising to Fostering Behaviour Change to Prevent Violence against Women and Girls
Awareness raising activities are widely used and have an important role to play in tackling violence against women and girls (VAWG). However, there is little evidence that awareness raising activities on their own are able to significantly reduce VAWG. Numerous programmes designed to prevent VAWG have raised awareness and shifted attitudes about abuse, but far fewer have successfully reduced violent behaviour, and there is often a mismatch between the intended aims of awareness raising activities and what they are likely to achieve. This has led researchers and practitioners to explore whether and how behaviour change theories and approaches might be applied to support the development of more effective VAWG prevention programmes.
These two complementary briefs, produced by UN Women and the Prevention Collaborative, highlight the different types of awareness raising approaches and what they can achieve, as well as the limitations of this approach, and outline key steps to apply a behavioral approach for violence prevention.