Our model for impact

CEDRR combines theories of learning, behaviour change, and diffusion of information to create a composite of impact called LAS:

Learning + Action + Spillover

Together, these measures of impact allow us to identify a range of outcomes from our engagements, and how risk preparedness can spread into the wider community, amplifying the impact of each engagement.


Theories of learning refute the effectiveness of generic mass messaging. CEDRR addresses this challenge through discussions with households concerning their specific perceptions, values, needs, and context. The resulting ‘awareness’ is household-specific, which we believe is much more likely to support implementation of risk mitigation actions than generic awareness raising mechanisms.

We perform qualitative analysis to identify three different types of learning:

  • Cognitive learning: change in thinking about risk
  • Normative learning: changed values
  • Relational learning: changed perception of interactions with people and place


At its core, our project aims to encourage action that prepares households to mitigate risk, reducing the impact of disasters when they occur. Through qualitative analyses, we dive deep into the reasons behind people’s decisions on whether or not to take actions to reduce their household risk. We believe that this deeper understanding is critical to improving the risk management sector: better understanding of what motivates people to take action allows for more informed risk manage strategies that are attuned to local contexts, needs and desires.

Our results show that people aren’t as simple as risk management authorities might perceive them to be and that people’s behaviours are shaped by an interplay between their perceptions, past experience of risk, social networks, priorities, life phase, capacity to implement action, dependents, allocation of responsibility, and previous experiences of frustration attempting to address risks. Providing an insight into these complex and nuanced motivations helps to explain why one approach and one solution does not suit everyone.


The impact diffusion of awareness, learning or behaviours from participants to the wider community is often overlooked by those responsible for managing risk. As far as we know, we are the first to begin to quantify the impact these ‘spillover effects’ can have on risk reduction when you take the time to speak to people instead of telling them what to do.

Our results show that participants often share information, resources or experiences of our engagement with their networks. In some cases, even though participants didn’t take action themselves, they have shared things they learned from our engagements to help their loved ones reduce risk. This suggests that the experience and/or the content of the engagement was considered worthy of sharing, and in this way, risk preparedness can ripple out through the community.

The theory behind our method