behavior change

"Designing for Behavior Change" - New O'Reilly Title Coming from Local Data Community Member

This guest post is by Steve Wendel, "a behavioral social scientist and simulation modeling expert" at HelloWallet who has been a strong supporter of Data Community DC since the beginning. Cover Design

I'm happy to announce that O'Reilly Media will be publishing a new book I'm writing called Designing for Behavior Change. The book gives step-by-step guidance on how to design, build, and test products that help people change their daily behavior and routines. The goal is to help people take actions that they want to take, but have struggled with in the past: from exercising more (FitBit, Fuelband), to spending less on utilities (Opower, Nest), to taking control of their finances (HelloWallet).

It's a practical how-to book, aimed at designers, product folks, data scientists, entrepreneurs and others who are thinking about and building these products. It includes:

  1. Insight into how the mind makes decisions, and what that means for changing behavior.
  2. Step-by-step instructions on how to select a behavioral change strategy, and convert that strategy into a real product.
  3. Techniques and software tools for evaluating the concrete impact of a product on user behavior, and for discovering the factors that block users from changing their behavior.
  4. Lots of practical, concrete examples.

For those of you who have been reading my blog for a while, it covers some of the same topics (how to sustain engagement with a product, how to overcome existing habits, etc), but in much greater depth, and with an overall framework to make sense of the product development process.

The book draws from our experiences here at HelloWallet over the last four years, and well as from the dozens of companies I've had the joy of talking with through the Action Design DC Meetup, and mentoring companies at The Fort and 1776 DC.

If you'd like a free copy of the draft eBook, just sign up for my email newsletter here ( I'll send out draft chapters as they become ready, and blog posts on related topics.

I look forward to your feedback! I'd also love to hear about interesting case studies and examples of companies doing this work.