Calculating the personal, community and social impact: a social return on investment analysis of vehicle modifications for people with disability

Angela Berndt, Claire Hutchinson, Susan Gilbert-Hunt, Stacey George, Julie Ratcliffe

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Vehicle modifications (VMs) enable people with disability to achieve lifestyle goals. Modifications range from relatively inexpensive to complex and costly. Funding policy requires robust evidence to ensure fairness in expenditure for consumers. Social Return on Investment (SROI) represents the net benefits / net investment as a ratio of social value (e.g. $3:1 for each dollar spent) and is an appropriate methodology to explore the benefits of VMs for people with disability.

Complete an innovative funder and consumer co-investment SROI analysis to measure and value outcomes of implementation of VMs for community mobility.

An interdisciplinary team implemented a 6-stage SROI was applied by an. Rich qualitative data on experiences of consumers, rehabilitation physicians, driver-trained occupational therapists, driving instructors, vehicle modifiers and rehabilitation engineers (n=23) were gathered. Five scenarios then captured different levels of investment (low cost to high end technology). Primary and secondary data from published papers and public domain sources were used to develop proxy values and complete SROI calculations.

VMs are associated with a wide range of positive outcomes and improved quality of life of people with disabilities, as well providing outcomes for carers and community. For funders, an SROI of between $135.01 and $3.40 was estimated for every $1 invested and, for consumers, between $15.29 and $19.86 for every $1 invested. For consumers, payback periods were between 5.4 and 7.1 months. For funders, who bear a more substantial proportion of the investment in high end technology, payback for the most complex scenario was 2 years 8.4 months.

With the NDIS, increased uptake of VMs as an intervention is likely. VMs represent value for money whether simple or complex. This analysis is important for stakeholders including funding bodies, policy makers, practitioners, and disability advocacy groups.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event2018 Australasian Road Safety Conference - Sydney, Australia
Duration: 2 Oct 20183 Oct 2018


Conference2018 Australasian Road Safety Conference


  • Statistical
  • Epidemiology and Other Road Safety Research Methods
  • Vehicle Safety


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