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<p><strong>Full text</strong></p> <p>The full text of the article is open access and available at <a href="http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17437199.2015.1077155" rel="nofollow">http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17437199.2015.1077155</a></p> <p><strong>Abstract</strong></p> <p>In this paper, we introduce the IM taxonomy of behavior change methods and its potential to be developed into a coding taxonomy. That is, although IM and its taxonomy of behavior change methods are not in fact new, because IM was originally developed as a tool for intervention development, this potential was not immediately apparent. Second, in explaining the IM taxonomy and defining the relevant constructs, we call attention to the existence of parameters for effectiveness of methods, and explicate the related distinction between theory-based methods and practical applications and the probability that poor translation of methods may lead to erroneous conclusions as to method-effectiveness. Third, we recommend a minimal set of intervention characteristics that may be reported when intervention descriptions and evaluations are published. Specifying these characteristics can greatly enhance the quality of our meta-analyses and other literature syntheses. In conclusion, the dynamics of behavior change are such that any taxonomy of methods of behavior change needs to acknowledge the importance of, and provide instruments for dealing with, three conditions for effectiveness for behavior change methods. For a behavior change method to be effective: 1) it must target a determinant that predicts behavior; 2) it must be able to change that determinant; 3) it must be translated into a practical application in a way that preserves the parameters for effectiveness and fits with the target population, culture, and context. Thus, taxonomies of methods of behavior change must distinguish the specific determinants that are targeted, practical, specific applications, and the theory-based methods they embody. In addition, taxonomies should acknowledge that the lists of behavior change methods will be used by, and should be used by, intervention developers. Ideally, the taxonomy should be readily usable for this goal; but alternatively, it should be clear how the information in the taxonomy can be used in practice. The IM taxonomy satisfies these requirements, and it would be beneficial if other taxonomies would be extended to also meet these needs.</p>
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