Our Theory of Change

Our Theory of Change is presented here. Initially published as a draft on 25 January for comment and feedback, the Theory was confirmed as a final version on 25 March. Feedback remains welcome.

According to the Australian Institute of Family Studies, a Theory of Change is “an explicit process of thinking through and documenting how a program or intervention is supposed to work, why it will work, who it will benefit (and in what way) and the conditions required for success”; it is intended to “explain strategies, actions, conditions and resources that facilitate change and achieve outcomes” (Goldsworthy 2021).

Developed as far as possible using evidence, and with carefully tested assumptions, our draft Theory of Change takes tacit knowledge built up by our management team and sets it out in a way that we hope can provide some transparency about our work: why we do what we do, and how we do it. It identifies key problems and barriers, and sets out how we seek to achieve our goals and outcomes.

It was developed by Dr Morgan Carpenter for discussion and refining at sessions with the board and staff of IHRA and Intersex Peer Support Australia between October and November 2023.

Click image or click here to download Theory of Change (PDF)alternative text-only version (PDF)

The Theory of Change is complemented by a peer-reviewed journal article on the context and goals of the intersex movement in Australia, also by Dr Morgan Carpenter, published in March 2024.

Theory of Change (final version) screenshot

Acronyms used in the Theory of Change:
ABS – Australian Bureau of Statistics
ICD – International Classification of Diseases
IHRA – Intersex Human Rights Australia
IVSC – Innate variations of sex characteristics
LGBT – Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender
MBS – Medicare Benefits Scheme
PBS – Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
WHO – World Health Organization

Thank you to Sarah McLennan at Malvolio for the graphic design work.

Carpenter, Morgan. 2024. ‘From Harmful Practices and Instrumentalisation, towards Legislative Protections and Community-Owned Healthcare Services: The Context and Goals of the Intersex Movement in Australia’. Social Sciences 13 (4): 191. https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci13040191.

Goldsworthy, Kathryn. 2021. ‘What Is Theory of Change?’ Australian Institute of Family Studies. https://aifs.gov.au/sites/default/files/publication-documents/2109_what_is_theory_of_change_0.pdf.