Behavioral Ideas Lab (Ideas42) plans to apply insights from behavioral economics to improve the delivery of family planning and reproductive health services in sub-Saharan Africa. The Foundation is currently supporting the first phase of Ideas42’s work, which focuses on identifying partner organizations and behavioral problems. During the second phase, Ideas42 plans to partner with two organizations to design, prototype, and test interventions to address challenges. These challenges may range from improving counseling for and use of family planning methods after abortions to decreasing the rates of discontinuation of modern contraceptives. Ideas42 intends to share project lessons with the reproductive health field broadly
About the Grantee
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Grants to this Grantee
for support of the civic engagement portfolio
The civic engagement practice at ideas42 is a creative workshop that develops behavioral science-based solutions to improve civic participation and voter access in the United States. An anchor project in the portfolio is VoterCast, a platform that equips local election officials with customized, best-in-class voter outreach materials that clarify the voting process and build trust in our elections. With this grant, ideas42 will partner with election administrators and civic organizations to scale innovations that making voting easier, more accessible, and more meaningful for millions of voters.
for general operating support
Behavioral Ideas Lab uses scientific insights from behavioral economics research to design innovative policies and products, both domestically and internationally, that solve tough social problems. The Foundation has supported the Lab’s work for the past three years, starting from the time it was founded at Harvard University as the Policy Design Initiative by, among others, Sendhil Mullainathan, a professor of Economics at the University (and a recipient of a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant"). During that time, the Initiative successfully reconceptualized social problems, and designed and tested scalable solutions through strategic partnerships. For example, it has reviewed all of the Children and Families programs in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to implement behavioral interventions that could increase uptake and retention of services, or improve program effectiveness in other ways. In the future, a division of the Lab will remain at Harvard to focus on academic research activities, while this new nonprofit will focus on social impact projects. For example, research into incentives for Ugandan business owners to repay their loans has the potential to change both the perception of credit risk for microfinance institutions and provide more access to finance for small businesses in developing countries.