Integrating Gender into Social and Behavior Change Communication

STEP 5: Define Gender Transformative Communication Objectives

After setting a transformative vision, analyzing the new information from the situation analysis and adjusting your priority and influencing audience, you may have decided you need to revise or add more communication objectives. Communication objectives should reflect the desired knowledge, attitudes and practices (or behaviors) of your intended audience as well as social norms and/or policies, as a direct result of your SBCC or social marketing program. They should be clear and specific, and concisely answer:

  • What do we want to happen?
  • How will this change affect the individual, community and society?
  • When do we want these changes?

You program most likely has objectives specific to health behaviors, such as an increase in use of modern contraceptives and/or an increase in utilization of family planning clinics. Integrating gender into the objectives of an SBCC strategy or marketing plan requires that the social and behavioral determinants identified in the gender-based analysis be considered and gender transformative changes reflected in your objectives. For example, do you need to add communication objectives around improved decision-making power among women? Greater partner communication? Reduced acceptance of violence against women? Greater involvement of men in family planning counseling?

To be transformative, the communication objectives should not limit themselves to health outcomes alone. Although your objectives may not address every level of the socio-ecological model, you should consider the socio-cultural norms that exist within the individual, family, community, facility and social or structural levels.  



Activity 5.1: Develop SMART (and transformative) Objectives

This activity will guide you to develop SMART communication objectives that are not only clear, specific and concise but gender transformative. Gender transformative objectives will allow you to design, implement and measure a program that contributes to gender transformation. 

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