Project Background

CONRAD, a leading organization in reproductive health research and development, is dedicated to developing new ways for women to protect themselves from HIV/AIDS, unintended pregnancy and other infections. Funded by the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) through generous assistance from the American people, CONRAD received an award in July 2015, Project EMOTION (Cooperative Agreement AID-OAA-A-15-00033), in support of a Human-centered Design (HCD) strategy to increase demand, use and adherence of HIV prevention products for high risk women in Africa.

A human-centered approach

Human-centered Design is a methodology that starts with a deep understanding of people’s desires and ends with tangible, new solutions that are tailor-made to suit their needs and shift their behavior. It’s a methodology that has its origins in the concepts of Participatory Design, User-centered Design and Product Design, which were pioneered in the 1970s, and has been evolving through increasingly diverse applications ever since. Our process begins with deep empathy for the people we are designing for and invites them into the process to design with us.

Project Phases

The slideshow below shows the various phases on the project and the key activities therein.

A sneak peak into our methods

We created two brands with different messaging concepts—one boldly graphic and the other focusing on hygiene. We traveled across South Africa understanding what resonated with people and why.
We prototyped a wide variety of different interventions to test with users. We find that by putting tangible initial concepts into people’s hands, we are able to have richer, more meaningful conversations.
By visiting and talking with people where they live, we are able to have a better understanding of who they are, their complex situation and how to design solutions that fit into their lives.

Watch the video for more information:

EMOTION Consortium Partners:

ABT JTA logo
Matchboxology logo