White-3044.pdf (160.8 kB)
Download file

Designing evidence-based and context-specific hygiene programs in emergencies: could there be an app for that?

Download (160.8 kB)
conference contribution
posted on 13.11.2018, 14:30 by Sian White, Tom Heath, Kelly James, Jean Lapegue
When a humanitarian crisis occurs the disease risk associated with faecal-oral pathogens substantially increases. Encouraging crisis-affected populations to wash their hands with soap has therefore been a cornerstone of humanitarian response for decades. Recent literature reviews have highlighted that current approaches to hygiene programming are dated and insufficient to realise actual behaviour change. This research explored the factors that determine hygiene behaviour in emergencies and the barriers that prevent humanitarian actors from improving hygiene program design. This was done by conducting qualitative research in Iraq and the Democratic Republic of Congo and interviews with global and national humanitarian agencies. Humanitarian actors felt that hygiene behaviour change was the remit of experts and that current guides are overly generic and hard to adapt and apply. The findings from this research are being used to develop a software-based tool to aid practitioners in designing rapid, evidence-based and context-specific programs in emergencies.


Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

Research Unit

  • Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC)

Published in

Transformation towards sustainable and resilient WASH services: Proceedings of the 41st WEDC International Conference


? - ? (6)


WHITE, S. ... et al, 2018. Designing evidence-based and context-specific hygiene programs in emergencies: could there be an app for that? IN: Shaw, R.J. (ed). Transformation Towards Sustainable and Resilient WASH Services: Proceedings of the 41st WEDC International Conference, Nakuru, Kenya, 9th-13th July 2018, Paper 3044, 6pp.


© WEDC, Loughborough University


AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date



This is a conference paper.




Nakuru, Kenya

Usage metrics