Did the strategies cause the change?

Once you have identified a change, you need to see if that change can be attributed to your strategies, or whether it is a reflection of changes in the environment. Comparing your data to something else, such as a benchmark or control group, will help you to isolate the effects of your strategies from the general fluctuations caused by other changes in the environment.

To do this, you need to:

  • look at the comparison method identified earlier
  • plot your comparison data on the graph
  • compare the pattern of movements in both the comparison data and your compliance data to see if there are any differences.

If the data shows a difference in the pattern of movement after the strategies were implemented, you can say with some confidence that your strategies had an effect on compliance behaviour or community confidence. However, if your compliance data displays the same pattern as the comparison statistic, you can conclude that the observed changes in behaviour were caused by environmental factors.

Comparison data can be generated through the use of benchmarks and inferential statistical techniques, such as randomised control trials or matched groups.

    Last modified: 13 Jan 2015QC 25789