Network Targeting Mechanisms

Simple or Complex Contagion? Testing Optimal Network Targeting Mechanisms in a Placebo-Controlled RCT in Zambia

(With Felix Elwert)

In this project, we partner with the German Development Corporation to assess the optimal ways to target individuals in school networks to achieve attitudinal and behavioral change. Enrolling 220 Zambian schools, we compare two educational campaigns (a human rights intervention, and a HIV behavior change intervention) that are either given to random seeds within the school network, the most central individuals (simple contagion) or the most central individuals and select friends (complex contagion). In addition, we test several distinct ways to measure networks in order to gain a better understanding of the optimal ways to describe networks. Baseline surveying will commence in January 2017. The overall project is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2017.