Bec Sanderson



I was Research Lead at PIRC until 2020, having joined the organisation in 2012, initially to work on Common Cause. I now continue working for PIRC as an Associate, supporting PIRC’s audience research and frame testing.

I am interested in the beliefs people have about the way the world works, and how beliefs and behaviours are primed by our narratives, including our choice of values and metaphor. Frame testing is my main focus. I authored the guide ‘How to Test Communications and am always looking for how to do this in creative and effective ways, and how to support campaigners to test on a low budget.

While at PIRC, I co-wrote the Framing the Economy report, the Framing Equality Toolkit,  The Narratives We Need, and most recently led the research for Framing Climate Justice. I continue to support various projects, including Framing Climate Justice and Reframing Race.

Skills & interests:

#framing #testingcomms #values #ultimatefrisbee #flatorgs #cognitivebiases #wildswimming

Recent posts by Bec:

Comms Good Practice To segment or not to segment? When to use audience segmentation in campaigns

Segmentation research needs to serve our strategy, not be the strategy. And we should only do it if it’s the best way to understand our audience, if we keep our communications rooted in our values, and if we can actually target the segments we find.  On the face of it, audience segmentation is a noRead more

Pandemic Response: Part 6 Pandemic Resources Regularly updated

Action is the antidote to despair. Joan Baez Resources for communicating about COVID-19: National Covid-19 Messaging Document ASO Communications Talking About COVID-19: A Call for Racial, Economic, and Health Equity The Opportunity Agenda Progressive Framing of the Coronavirus Pandemic The Commons Social Change Library Covid-19 Pandemic Resources for Progressives Australian Progress Metaphors in the timeRead more

Pandemic Response: Part 4 Pandemic Metaphors 21 Tracking the narrative

Analyses of language reveal the extraordinary fact that we use around one metaphor for every ten seconds of speech or written work. If that sounds like too much, it’s because you’re so used to thinking metaphorically – to speaking of ideas that are ‘conceived’ or rain that is ‘driving’ or rage that is ‘burning’ orRead more

Pandemic Response: Part 3 Pandemic Beliefs 1 Understanding the narrative

Only a crisis – actual or perceived – produces real change. When that crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas that are lying around. Milton Friedman So what are the ideas that are lying around? You may not share Milton Friedman’s opinion of the ideas we need lying around. But ourRead more

Pandemic Response: Part 1 Unimaginable times 2 An evolving resource

Just a few weeks ago, this moment was unimaginable. We would not have believed the headlines, or been able to picture how the high street looks today. COVID-19 has abruptly pressed pause on anything that resembles ‘normal’ day-to-day life. This is a moment of anxiety. We are fearful for our health and the health ofRead more

More posts by Bec...