General Collective Efficacy Scale

The General Collective Efficacy (CE) Scale is a 26-item measure of the mechanisms through which CE, defined as perceptions regarding a group's ability to execute actions related to a common goal, operate. The scale contains 6 factors related to CE: social response; social networks and personal agency; social attachment; common vision; associational participation; and community organization and leadership. In addition, CE scales for men and women were developed to allow for examinations of gender-specific mechanisms through which CE operates. The scale was originally developed within a sanitation and hygiene project in rural Ethiopia.


Geographies Tested: Ethiopia

Populations Included: Female, Male

Age Range: Adults


Factor: Social response
1. This is a close-knit community (i.e. the people in this community have close personal relationships with each other).
2. When there is a problem in this community, people come together to discuss how it should be solved.
3. People in this community can be trusted.
4. If there is a problem that affects the entire community, for instance, crop disease, people in this community will help each other.
5. If there is a big dispute between two persons, other people from the community will help in solving the problem.

Factor: Social networks and personal agency
6. My neighbours sometimes come to me to share their problems and get help.
7. If you suddenly need some money, you can borrow from a person or group in your community.
8. If you and your relatives suddenly had to go away for a day or two, you could count on your neighbors to take care of your children.
9. I have the ability to contribute to this community's development.
10. I have the capacity to achieve my future aims.

Factor: Community organisation and leadership
11. The leaders of community-based associations, like Edir leaders, respond to this community's concerns.
12. The community-based associations, such as the Edir, in this community is very active.
13. People in this community get to choose the leaders of their own community-based associations, such as the Edir leaders.
14. There are people in this community who show strong leadership.
15. Formal administrative leaders, like the kebele managers, provide support to this community.

Factor: Associational participation
16. I attend meetings of a community-based association, such as the Edir.
17. I participate in activities held by any community-based associations, such as the Edir.
18. I attend the meetings of any government or NGO-initiated community development group, such as the Development Army.

Factor: Social attachment
19. People in this community accept me as a member of the community.
20. Being a member of this community is part of who I am.
21. I feel attached to this community and its people.
22. People in this community share the same ideas on how village matters should be managed.
23. Most people in this community have similar hopes about the future development of the community.

Factor: Common vision
24. Most people in this community have common values, for example, they value hard work.
25. People in this community have the capacity to make positive changes by coming together.
26. During crisis situations, such as drought, government services are distributed equally by the community to all households in need.

Response Options:
Completely disagree - 1
Partially disagree - 2
Neither agree nor disagree [neutral] - 3
Partially agree - 4
Completely Agree - 5

Scoring Procedures

Collective Efficacy (CE) factor scores may be calculated in two ways: as either average or average weighted scores. In either approach, higher factor scores represent higher levels of perceived behavioral control over the respective CE factors.

Average CE factor scores are calculated by summing responses for all items in each factor and dividing that sum by the number of items subsumed under that factor. This scoring is simpler however it assumes that all items have the same level of influence on the latent factor, which may not necessarily be the case. Therefore, a second approach was used in which one calculated the weighted average CE factor scores. Weights were applied to be equal to the item's initial factor loadings or loadings prior to generating an average score.

Original Citation

Delea, M. G., Sclar, G. D., Woreta, M., Haardorfer, R., Nagel, C. L., Caruso, B. A., Dreibelbis, R., Gobezayehu, A. G., Clasen, T. F., & Freeman, M. C. (2018). Collective Efficacy: Development and Validation of a Measurement Scale for Use in Public Health and Development Programmes. International journal of environmental research and public health, 15(10), 2139.

Psychometric Score

Ease of Use Score

Scoring breakdown

Formative Research

Qualitative Research

Existing Literature/Theoretical Framework

Field Expert Input

Cognitive Interviews / Pilot Testing








Criterion (gold-standard)



Ease of Use


Scoring Clarity


Join the EMERGE Community

to get the latest updates on new measures and guidance for survey researchers