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The 3 biggest mistakes made by social impact entrepreneurs that no one’s talking about

You’d be amazed at how many change-makers assume this one thing — that educating people about a cause, leads to people taking action on a cause. It doesn’t work. Here’s why.

Behavioral Design Hub
9 min readJul 11, 2020


You’ve probably heard this one before.

“If people just knew about it, then things would change.”

“If people only cared more, things would change.”

Then comes the next bit — “Let’s create a project-startup-campaign-book-documentary-app-NGO-conference-festival to EDUCATE people on this very important issue and get them to CARE more!”

I see it happen over, and over, and over again.

If you are trying to change the world, then it’s likely that you have fallen prey to one of the most prevalent, yet little-known mistakes that thousands of nonprofits, governments, and activists have made before you.

I call it “The Biggest Mistake” and it starts with an innocent and seemingly logical hypothesis: that knowing about a thing, motivates people to do a thing. Most people who are trying to change the world make the mistake of assuming that instilling a new-found knowledge and…



Katie Patrick | Action Designer
Behavioral Design Hub

Environmental Engineer | Author of How to Save the World | Learn climate action design and how to gamify sustainability at