Foreword: Motivation for this Research and Report
West African countries are poised for significant change in family planning behaviors. Although modern contraceptive use has grown by 6% per year in the region since 2014, West African countries must find ways to maintain or accelerate these gains if they hope to achieve their FP2020 targets. New approaches are needed to deepen our understanding of people’s family planning choices and desires—not for specific geographies or sub-groups, but for entire countries.
USAID’s Transform/PHARE project is dedicated to developing, testing and adapting leading innovations in marketing, research, and design to address barriers to modern contraceptive use and promote family planning in West Africa. National demand analysis serves this purpose. This approach was developed in the private sector, to enable leading companies to understand the needs of their most valuable customers, and to change the customer experience and the company’s operations to attract and retain them. It is a robust, scalable approach that is readily transferable to global health and development.
In the context of family planning in West Africa, national demand analysis provides a nuanced understanding of why different populations do and don’t use family planning or contraceptives, and what can be done about it. It can also be used to inform policy, resource allocation, and integration of social and behavior change (SBC) programming along the service delivery continuum—giving providers the opportunity to better understand their clients, and to speak directly to their needs before, during, and after service provision.
National demand analysis was used for the first time in Niger in 2014 – 2015 with the support of the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, to address the country’s increasing fertility rate. The Transform/PHARE project adapted and applied the approach in Côte d’Ivoire, taking another step towards establishing national demand analysis as a core SBC programming practice.
The analysis that we share here found that Cote d’Ivoire can indeed reach its ambitious FP2020 mCPR goals with focused action. We believe the analysis and the recommendations included in this report offer a roadmap for government, stakeholders and implementers to target resources and design policies and strategies to meet the needs of the highest impact populations in Côte d’Ivoire.
And for the broader West Africa region, this report shows how the use of national demand analysis can provide an insightful, consistent, and actionable understanding of people’s wants and needs—across a full population. It is a valuable input to quality SBC programming, especially at the national level.