Chapter 2 Rationale

In this second of two introductory chapters we present the rationale for project RISE. This includes research objectives, motivation, and an outlining of the methodological approach. We cover why the ritual lens can be so impactful in the space of behavior change in global and public health. We relate the ritual-based approach to current research about CHW programs globally, and regarding CHW programs specifically in India. We briefly cover some major themes from social and behavioral change communication (SBCC) research. While project RISE is unique, there are many points of connection to findings in these areas, especially those that stress the importance of locally variable sources of influence, the importance of trust, or the inadequacy of incentives to understand motivation and performance. We then present a framework that helps articulate how the embeddedness of the ASHA within her community creates under-appreciated challenges for her to be maximally effective. In subsequent chapters we repeatedly return to what some of these challenges are and how to use ritual to understand them.