04:34pm Friday 20 October 2017

BehaviourWorks Australia to investigate, encourage sustainable behaviour

BehaviourWorks Australia, a partnership between the Monash Sustainability Institute, EPA Victoria and The Shannon Company, will be officially launched today by EPA Chairman Cheryl Batagol.

With the aim of encouraging behaviour change at individual, community, business and government levels, BehaviourWorks Australia will bring together highly-developed but previously separate strands of research and practice. 

Professor John Thwaites, Chairman of the Monash Sustainability Institute and ClimateWorks Australia, said all partner organisations shared a commitment to addressing contemporary environmental challenges, such as energy and water usage, and recognised that influencing behaviour was critical to this.

“BehaviourWorks Australia will play a pivotal role in bridging the gap between behaviour change disciplines, researchers and practitioners in business and government. 

“While economic incentives, regulation and educational programs may all impact decision-making, the motivations underlying human behaviour are more complex than any of these individual fields of research allow.

“Interdisciplinary approaches and expertise stand the best chance of generating influential and lasting behaviour change,” said Professor Thwaites.

“BehaviourWorks Australia intends to be at the forefront of international behaviour change research and practice, with a foundation based on collaboration and knowledge sharing among leaders in the field of behaviour change and environmental sustainability.”

Led by Dr Liam Smith, the team at BehaviourWorks Australia will include Monash University researchers from disciplines including psychology, education, law, economics and marketing. The on-the-ground experience of leading practitioners from government and business will assist in translating the research into practice. 

The goal of the initiative is to develop and apply an adaptive behaviour change approach, suitable for public and private sectors, to be implemented by all partners. Constantly evaluated and adapted in line with new, collaborative research, this approach will deliver best practice behaviour change programs and outcomes.

Dr Smith and Professor Thwaites, together with Ms Batagol and Michael Daddo of The Shannon Company, will further outline BehaviourWorks Australia’s mission and research goals at the launch.

BehaviourWorks Australia will be launched Monday 19 September, from 5pm at the Monash Conference Centre, Level 11, 30 Collins Street.

For further information or to arrange an interview with Dr Liam Smith, contact Emily Walker, Media and Communications on +61 3 9903 4844 or 0428 277 308


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