• BehaviorSMART is hiring

    a Digital Communications Doer

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  • Join Our First MileTM Lab for Businesses

    Learn more about our upcoming edition in Fall 2022.

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  • Join Our First MileTM Lab for Destinations

    Learn more about our upcoming edition in Fall 2022.

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  • We translate human behavior so that you can achieve more with less.


    Our Approach
  • OUR PUBLICATIONS

    Behavioral Economics: WTTC x Harvard Sustainability Leadership Learning Insights series

    Read the article
  • FROM OUR BLOG

    The First Mile™

    Learn more
  • BehaviorSMART is hiring

    a Digital Communications Doer

    Learn more
  • Join Our First MileTM Lab for Businesses

    Learn more about our upcoming edition in Fall 2022.

    Learn more
  • Join Our First MileTM Lab for Destinations

    Learn more about our upcoming edition in Fall 2022.

    Learn more
  • We translate human behavior so that you can achieve more with less.


    Our Approach
  • OUR PUBLICATIONS

    Behavioral Economics: WTTC x Harvard Sustainability Leadership Learning Insights series

    Read the article
  • FROM OUR BLOG

    The First Mile™

    Learn more

BehaviorSMART™ means being realistic about how people really think, decide and act in order to design optimal and effective business, sustainability and learning solutions.

Our Services

Based on our expertise blending knowledge in tourism, sustainability and human behavior, our services enable:

Destinations and Clusters

Tourism businesses

CONSULTANCIES & ADVISERS

  • to accelerate your sustainability and net zero journey and/or

  • to strengthen your market success.

about BehaviorSmart Services.

  • Västmanland Tourism about us

    Milena is a highly professional, yet very approachable expert in her field of Behavioral Economics. I first heard Milena speak at a big tourism event in Chile. This very inspiring speech was enough to see the potential for our destination to grow in a profitable and sustainable way by applying behavior-smart solutions based on Milena’s vast knowledge.

    • Åsa Stanaway
    • Business Developer
    • Västmanland Tourism, Sweden

The BehaviorSMART™ approach

Step 1

1. Solve

Step 2

2. Model

Step 3

3. Activate

Step 4

4. Result

Step 5

5. Transition

For more ideas on how behavioral optimization can help you, explore the more detailed examples in the Services section.

Regardless of the scope and scale of the problem we are solving behavioral optimization requires careful tailoring with smart consideration of contextual and individual specifics. To ensure that we optimize the understanding and tackling of every project, we apply our specialized proprietary BehaviorSMART methodology that involves five steps for understanding the problem we need to Solve, through identifying the specific behavioral forces that Model the challenge, through exploring a wide variety of solutions that can help Activate the desired behavioral change, through analysis of the options that Result in the pursued outcomes, and to the execution of steps that help Transition to the desired state.

1. Solve

What are we trying to SOLVE?

The first step of the process is to clearly formulate the problem at hand and the desired state that we want to reach.

Guests forget to wear their masks when they walk into a closed attraction thus risking the health of their guide.

2. Model

What incentives and barriers MODEL the problem?

The second step of the process is to identify the exact behavioral mechanisms that encourage undesired behavior and/or suppress the desired behavior.

The analysis finds that there are two reasons guests do not wear their masks. First, they forget to put them on when they walk in as they are much more focused on the site they are visiting and consider that a small insignificant detail. Second, even if they remember at some point, they see that the rest of the group does not have their masks on and proceed without a mask.

3. Activate

How can we ACTIVATE a transition to a new journey that leads to the desired outcomes?

The third step of the process is about generating a set of possible behavioral mechanisms that can be applied to achieve the desired behavioral change.

Among the ways to minimize the likelihood that guests will forget is to incorporate reminders at the appropriate moments or to increase the importance of wearing a mask. The first can be done with special signs, with audio reminders or with verbal reminders by the guide but a careful analysis reveals that signs and audio reminders cannot be installed at historical sites as this is technologically impossible. Guides are focused on many of their other responsibilities so they cannot remind about masks. Therefore the most relevant approach seems to be to increase the importance of masks by adding personal information about the guide and his family and linking mask to their safety.

4. Result

Which approaches RESULT in the desired change?

The fourth step of the process is to test the selected solutions in the specific context to confirm their potency in addressing the targeted challenge.

The identified solution is tested with three different groups and shows that at the beginning the group remembers to put the mask on but that later in the day as the information about the guide’s family fades, they forget. An additional intervention that is identified to help sustain the effect is to assign one or two guests as responsible for mask reminders, which ensures that the majority will put them on and will create social pressure for the rest. Follow on tests confirm that the mix of these interventions secures long-term results.

5. Transition

What are the exact steps that will help TRANSITION to the behaviorally-optimised state?

The fifth final step of the process involves outlining the action steps towards applying the new behavioral journey design in order to reach the desired behavioral optimization.

The roll out phase involves the outlining of specific steps towards the changed processes, including planning the exact moment and format of communicating personal information about the guide, linking that to mask wearing, assigning responsible guests and monitoring results.

Latest Blog Posts

Photo credit: Sven Wilhelm

The First Mile™

Behavior change can power smart progress towards sustainability that is efficient, low-investment and enables the later efforts. Focusing on the first mile of the journey makes operations smarter and more efficient but it also sets solid foundations…
Photo Credit: Anne NygårdPhoto Credit: Anne Nygård

Market Mentality

Understanding and adapting to shifts in markets and societies that will shape new opportunities for tourism destinations and businesses. The travel industry will look very different in 2025 than it did prior to 2020, but how do we reach 2025…
Photo credit: NeONBRANDPhoto credit: NeONBRAND

The Price is Right

Price is a very powerful signal. It goes much beyond providing information about the monetary value of a service or experience. It influences perceptions, decisions and actions in ways that remain underutilised in the travel sector. This article…
Photo credit: Jo SzczepanskaPhoto credit: Jo Szczepanska

Planning Tourism for Reality, Not Hopes and Dreams

With this week’s article we take a look at how behavior-smart thinking can enhance milestone efforts such as creating a tourism plan for a destination. We put the spotlight on the small behavioural barriers that can make a lengthy and complex…
Photo credit: Markus Spiske/ UnsplashPhoto credit: Markus Spiske/ Unsplash

Sustainable by Design - Part 2: Making Sustainability Non-Negotiable (the solutions)

  With this 2-part article we take a look at how behavior-smart thinking can provide easy and low-investment solutions to help businesses, sites and attractions make sustainability a non-negotiable principle in their operations, rather…
(Photo credit: Markus Spiske/ Unsplash

Sustainable by Design - Part 1: A Story

With this 2-part article we take a look at how behavior-smart thinking can provide easy and low-investment solutions to help businesses, sites and attractions make sustainability a non-negotiable principle in their operations, rather than an…

Promoting Positive Behavior in Nature (with Bob…)

Most of us would agree that the images below are not something we would do or encourage. However such negative behavior is often inadvertent, happening because someone either doesn’t know any better, they are not thinking about the impact…

Changing Behavior to Mitigate Overtourism

Human decisions and actions are shaped by two main groups of factors -- internal (related to one’s personal characteristics, experience, state of mind), and external (related to the immediate surrounding and behavior of companions). The same…
Photo Credit: Caleb Jones/ UnsplasPhoto by Caleb Jones on Unsplash

Be Smart in Nature

As humans, we often act illogically… but many of our tourism systems are designed around unrealistic assumptions that people are consistently rational and logical in their decisions. Why?  The answer to these questions can frequently be…

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