IOM X applies Communication for Development (C4D) approaches to inform content and messaging to support positive behaviour change for the prevention of human trafficking and exploitation. IOM X follows a framework1 with inter-dependent steps to develop its evidence-based activities:

  1. Analysis
  2. Strategic Design
  3. Development and Testing
  4. Implementation
  5. Monitoring and Evaluation

This page gives an overview of the below steps and the research activities and methodologies used to inform and assess Know Before You Go:

1. Analysis

3. Development and Testing

5. Monitoring and Evaluation

Step 1: Analysis (Duration: 6 months)

Why content on the fishing industry?

Countries like Thailand and Malaysia are major destination countries for many male migrants looking for jobs. In Thailand alone there are an estimated 3.25 million migrant workers2, many of whom are from neighbouring countries. Of these migrant workers, an estimated 1 million migrated irregularly3. Irregular migrants are at high risk of being abused, exploited and trafficked as they are often employed in unregulated or informal sectors such as fishing.

Moreover, this video was part of IOM X’s broader strategy in producing three videos targeting different audiences (aspirant migrants, current migrants and consumers) to address trafficking in the fishing industry. This video focuses on safe migration tips for aspirant migrants, whereas a second video focuses on increasing consumer’s knowledge about trafficking in the fishing industry, and the third focuses on increasing knowledge about labour rights for current fishers, especially migrant workers.

What did IOM X do?

IOM X produced Know Before You Go, a seven-minute animation on safe migration practices. It is primarily meant for on-the-ground (offline) dissemination, such as at migrant resource centres (MRCs) and community based activities in Cambodia and Lao PDR.

Target audiences:

The primary target audience is male aspirant4 migrant workers (aged 18-35).


  • After viewing Know Before You Go, viewers will have increased knowledge about how to migrate safely for work and will demonstrate intent to practice safer behaviour (such as contacting a migrant resource center before migrating).
  • For every activity that is assessed using KAP surveys (more details below), IOM X has the following cross-cutting objectives: at least 15% increase in knowledge of targeted audiences; at least 5% increase in positive attitudes; and at least 20% increase in positive intended practice.5

What research was conducted to inform Analysis (Step 1)?

The following formative research was conducted to understand aspirant migrants’ knowledge, attitudes and practices (behaviours) towards safe migration.

Research Objectives Respondents
Consultation with experts $ Identify possible behaviour change objectives and messaging 7 regional experts in migration and human trafficking issues
Focus group discussion (x1) $ Understand motivations and practices of migrant workers and get input on safe migration messaging 5 male Myanmar migrants in Samut Sakorn, Thailand
In-Depth Interviews (x8) $ Gain better understanding of migration behaviours and get input on safe migration messaging

2 aspirant and 6 returned male Cambodian migrants, all from rural areas

The information gained from the formative research was used to inform Step 2 –strategic design (the creation of a creative brief and draft communication materials).

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Record interviews (make sure to get their consent!) so that you can pay attention to what interviewees are saying and listen again if you forgot what they said.
Record with mobile phones, dictation machines or software like Call Recorder.

Interview via Skype, WhatsApp, FaceTime or Viber to save time and cost. It’s also a great way of getting input from those who are not in the same city

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STEP 3: Development and Testing (Duration: 1month)

The rough cut of Know Before You Go was shared with members of the target audience and a number of partners to elicit feedback and suggestions on messaging and execution.

Research Objectives Respondents
Consultations (x7) $

Identify if the messaging was appropriate

Collect feedback on likes, dislikes and suggestions for improvement

Identify relevant and accessible resources to promote (e.g. helpline).

Representatives from IOM Viet Nam, IOM Lao PDR, IOM Cambodia, MRC staff in Poi Pet, ILO, UN-ACT, Cambodian National Committee for Counter Trafficking
Focus Group Discussion (x1) $

Evaluate message comprehension
Test if animation is relatable

Assess what is attractive and identify anything offensive

Collect feedback on likes, dislikes and suggestions for improvement

6 returned Khmer migrants (3 male, 3 female6), aged 18-25.

The results from the testing were used to improve the programme, which allowed for Step 4 of the process, Implementation.


STEP 5: Monitoring and Evaluation (Duration: 2 months)

Monitoring and evaluating during and after implementation is important to be able to to assess effectiveness, learn what worked well and what could be improved for future interventions.


Good practice involves routine data collection to measure the progress of an activity. Monitoring captures day-to-day activities to gain insights in whether the target audience are engaging in the activity (such as # of views) and what is happening to the target audience (such as testimonial comments on the video).

Know Before You Go was made available to a number of IOM Migrant Resource Centres (MRCs) in Cambodia and Lao PDR where aspirant migrants can view it. Monitoring this type of programme is different to online programmes. IOM monitored the screenings of Know Before You Go and collected feedback from the audience on behalf of IOM X.

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Behaviour change takes time and usually happens over a long period. However, as with any SMART objective, it is important to set a timeframe for data collection. This is necessary for budgeting reasons and to be able to deliver results to donors.


What is being
What does this tell us? 6 months following release
Video views Is the video reaching the target audience? 12,000
Feedback from target audience Is message relevant to those it is intended for? Qualitative testimonials of returned migrants from Bantaey Meanchey, Cambodia
Message retention Are viewers able to recall the key messages from the video? Face-to-face qualitative survey with 30 Cambodian aspirant and returned migrants at IOM MRC in Poi Pet, Cambodia



To evaluate a programme’s impact, best practice is to conduct baseline research (before an intervention) and an impact assessment (after an intervention has been implemented). Useful evaluation tools are the Knowledge, Attitude and intended Practice (KAP) pre- and post-surveys, which measure shifts in knowledge, attitude and intended-practice by conducting surveys before and after an intervention. IOM X hired a research agency to conduct a KAP to inform the baseline and assess the impact of Know Before You Go. Additionally, a qualitative survey was carried out.

KAP surveys are a standard methodology but it’s important they are conducted in a way that is appropriate for the target audience of the intervention. With regard to this programme, the targeted audience have low levels of access to the Internet, which means that online surveys would not have been appropriate and greater financial and human resources needed to be invested to conduct face-to-face interviews.

Location #of respondents and methodology Demographics
Svay Rieng,
Cambodia $$$$
Pre-survey: 30
Post-survey: 30
Door-to-door KAP survey (conducted in May and June 2016)
Aspirant male migrants, aged 18-35

KAP surveys can measure how successful an intervention was in accomplishing its objectives. The Prisana KAP surveys measured levels of knowledge, attitudes and intended practices towards human trafficking in the fishing industry based on responses to the statements below:

KAP Statement
  • Human trafficking means people are forced to do a job in which they are exploited
  • Human trafficking is linked to sex work, domestic work and labour
  • Human trafficking takes place in the Thai fishing industry
  • Men, women and children are at risk of human trafficking
  • Most trafficked persons are tricked by people they know and trust
  • Human trafficking is not really a big problem in Thailand
  • Assisting people who have been trafficked will attract unwanted migration
  • If human trafficking victims were poor to start with, at least now they have a job
  • People don’t really care if domestic workers are mistreated (apathy)
  • People I know don’t really care if migrant workers are mistreated
  • People who end up being trafficked have only themselves to blame


Practices (intentions to do the following)
  • Report suspicious employers who exploit people
  • Avoid buying products if it is suspected that they are produced by exploited workers
  • Talk to friends about human trafficking issues
  • Advise friends not to buy brands that come from companies that exploit workers
  • Encourage friends to support companies that follow fair trading practices

The impact assessments evidenced that Know Before You Go fulfilled all of its objectives:

1. Knowledge increased by an average 20% (target 15%)
2. Positive attitudes increased by an average of 6% (target 5%)
3. Intended practice increased by an average of 32% (target 20%)

All targets were met except for the five per cent increase in positive attitudes. Among male respondents, positive attitudes increased by around 10 per cent but as there was little impact among female respondents, the overall score was three per cent.


It is important to form local partnerships with organizations that have direct access to the targeted audience throughout the production process so that the content is receiving relevant input but also so these local organizations have a sense of ownership over the content that is intended for local level distribution, as is the case with Know Before You Go. IOM X is well positioned to create high quality media content, but as it is a regional campaign, IOM X depends on local IOM offices and partners that are better positioned to distribute videos to certain targeted audiences that have limited access to internet (such as aspirant male migrants in rural areas of Cambodia and Lao PDR). Local partners can reach the target audience better, as they already have well established networks at the local level. Thus, IOM X worked closely with partners in Cambodia to conduct the research and learning activities to inform, monitor and assess the video. As of November 2017, the video was viewed more than 92,000 times by aspirant and returned Cambodian migrants visiting the Poi Pet Migrant Resource Center. While the video was also intended to be viewed by aspirant Laotian migrants, dissemination there was based more on an ad hoc approach, as the initial research to inform the video did not include partners in Lao PDR, due to resources of only being able to conduct the research in one country (Cambodia).


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  • Some useful questions to keep in mind when monitoring and evaluating are:
    • Is the programme reaching its intended audience?
    • Is the target audience comprehending/relating to the content?
    • What early signs of progress can we detect?
  • If you cannot be physically present to monitor the intervention, work with partners to relay information on how the programme is running.
  • Creating your own qualitative survey can help gather information on how a programme is impacting your audience. This a cheap solution to complement a quantitative KAP survey.
  • A large-scale KAP survey can be expensive. However, it is crucial to set aside budget for M&E activities to know if the intervention accomplished the desired impact.
  • Even if the budget is tight, it is still possible to assess impact. To create a baseline, existing data such as the following can be used
    •   Official statistics
    • Existing survey results
    • Research reports
    • Journal and newspaper articles

Based on this information it is then possible to create a study to assess the impact of a programme.



The entire research process surrounding Know Before You Go, from formative research to the final impact assessments took place between December 2014 to June 2016. On average, IOM X assigns 12% of the total production budget to research and learning to ensure that the activity is providing IOM X with meaningful returns on impact and reach.

Know Before You Go succeeded in increasing understanding of safe migration practices, as was evidenced by the impact assessments. Additionally, watching the animation strengthened positive attitudes towards safe migration and intentions to migrate safely in aspirant migrants. For this reason, IOM X is continuing the dissemination of the video to grassroots organizations, migrant resource centres and NGOs in communities with high rates of out migration.

To learn more, watch Know Before You Go, read the impact assessment of the programme.