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Working with us - a partnership approach

BehaviourWorks Australia is called a research enterprise for a reason. From the start, our aim has been to break down the barriers that have previously prevented academic research from being translated into practice and to helping organisations make evidence-based program and investment decisions.

Advice you can trust

BehaviourWorks Australia is a university-based research unit that helps organisations view common and complex social, environmental and organisational problems through a behavioural lens.

We believe that having a practice grounded in academia gives us – and our partners – a distinct advantage, as our researchers are independent and trained to seek out and interpret data using well-established tools and processes.

Collaborative model

Collaboration is in our DNA. It’s a mindset that reflects our commitment to working with our partners in a way that maximises opportunities for knowledge sharing, capability building and the translation of research evidence into policy and practice.

While grounded in academia, many of our researchers have worked in government and industry and are sensitive to business systems and processes.

Our partners tell us that we’re an innovative, agile and fun organisation to work with; one that doesn’t just focus on theory, but problem-solving.

Partnership types

There are two ways of working with us:

1: Consortium partners are generally organisations that have been working with us for some time and want to enter into a more formal arrangement to enable knowledge sharing and capability building. These are generally state-government agencies, but we also have a long-standing partnership with The Shannon Company.

2. Project partners are organisations that work with us on a project-by-project basis. In entering into these partnerships, we generally look for projects that have a social benefit and have the potential to result in a publication, conference presentation or report.

To all our partners we offer: 

  • A tried and tested method for identifying behavioural problems, prioritising behaviours and developing intervention strategies.

  • Access to specialists from a range of behavioural/social science backgrounds.

  • Skills in designing, conducting and evaluating behaviour change trials.

  • Access to a subject matter experts from Monash University and other knowledge centres around the world.

  • Education and training.

Research services

BehaviourWorks offers a broad range of research services to government and non-government organisations.

These services are generally aligned to the BehaviourWorks Method – a comprehensive model for unpacking problems, understanding and prioritising behaviours and trialling interventions (also refer to our book on The Method being published in chapters over 2021). The Method is portrayed as a linear model or flow of activities. However, to identify the approach that is most likely to work, we typically move back and forth between phases and use various tools to answer project-specific questions. 

We briefly describe some most commonly used research tools and services below but please contact us for further information.


BehaviourWorks’ hackathons are like short, intensive ‘design-sprints’. They give organisations the opportunity to view prospective programs, communications, products or services through a behavioural lens and ensure they resonate with audiences.

Hackathons involve a small team of researchers with knowledge/expertise of the area under investigation.

Download the Hackathon Flyer here. 

Facilitated Dialogues

To gain a deeper understanding of the problem under investigation, BehaviourWorks offers Facilitated Dialogues. These dialogues have been extensively tested with a range of different audiences and have proven to be highly effective in bringing stakeholders together to consider the latest evidence on the problem and identify evidence-based opportunities for action. 

Facilitated Dialogues can help organisations avoid making costly assumptions and yield a shared understanding of ‘who needs to do what differently’.

Download the Flyer here.

Rapid Evidence and Practice Reviews

Rapid Evidence and Practice Reviews are a key input to our Facilitated Dialogues. Rapid Reviews are used to synthesise research evidence within a short timeframe (read a blog post on the methodology HERE).

Practice Reviews consist of structured interviews with individuals who are actively involved in the issue under investigation and can reveal important insights on what’s happening on the ground right now and practitioner-driven solutions.

Download the Rapid Evidence and Practice Review Flyer

INSPIRE communications framework

BehaviourWorks has identified seven proven techniques for improving written communications and increasing compliance with written requests. These techniques have been translated into a stand-alone product called INSPIRE, which provides specific instructions on how to apply each of these techniques and overcome practical challenges as they arise.

Download the INSPIRE flyer here.

Other research services

  • Systems mapping to identify the individuals, groups and organisations involved in the problem and who may be part of the solution.

  • Stakeholder engagement to gain a deeper understanding of the problem and how it is experienced in the real world.

  • Behavioural identification and prioritisation to give the partners a clear idea of the behaviours to target.

  • Target audience research to build a more detailed understanding of the context, barriers and motivations behind the behaviours.

  • Intervention co-design – linking the evidence to a range of practical intervention options. 

  • Analysis of datasets to help understand the nuances and scale of the problem and the factors that may be contributing to it.

  • Field trials to test the effects and impacts of different intervention approaches before a broader roll-out takes place.

  • Monitoring and evaluation frameworks to determine what type of data should be collected (how often) during a trial and adaptively manage interventions based on interim findings.

  • Knowledge sharing/translation through direct engagement with organisational staff and capability building (i.e. training).

All of the above services and approaches are informed by the latest developments and thinking from the field of behavioural science.

Getting started

Experience tells us that many organisations need help defining the problem to begin with, so we normally recommend that organisations bring us in early to help unpack the problem. 

Contact us to discuss your needs.