Dear CHANGE community,

I am a professor in the public policy school at UW, and I work on water supply and sanitation issues in poor countries. In particular, I am interested in studying the burden of water collection time on people, mostly women, in rural sub-Saharan Africa (globally, a few hundred million people are still walking to fetch water on a daily basis). I worked on a project with Gaetano, Rohit Chaudhri and several students a few years back where we designed sensors to attach to water containers to track times.

I have a new funded project that I could use help with. In particular, I would like to design a time-use diary app for low-cost Android phones that we will deploy to about 200 households in rural Meru County, Kenya. I'm looking for something like a pictorial version of the Toggl <> time tracking app, since many of our respondents are not literate. More details below my signature if you are interested.

Let's talk - and thanks in advance for any interest!

Best wishes,

Joe Cook
Associate Professor
Evans School of Public Policy & Governance
University of Washington

_More details_
The study will be measuring how water carriers use time that they save when they no longer need to collect water. We worked in this region three years ago, studying how people collected water (papers here <> and here <>), and are returning to re-survey the same households. This will be a randomized control trial - half of households will receive vouchers to have water delivered to them for free for four weeks (a smaller subset may be given large rainwater tanks), and half will continue to walk to collect water as before. Then they switch places for four weeks. To measure time use, we want to try to do "contemporaneous" diaries - fill out data as your day happens - rather than ask people to recall time use. These diaries are the gold standard in the US but are basically never done in low-income countries, in part because the study populations may be illiterate. Each household will be given an Android phone, and will be reporting data (like child school attendance and water use) to the study team via text messages on a daily basis. On a subset of days during the eight weeks, we'd like the main water carrier to use this custom-designed app to tell us how she is spending her day. The app would need to be very simple and intuitive for someone to use, and would need to be able to compile and push the data to the study team via text regularly. Beyond this particular field site, the methods and the app would definitely be of use to researchers globally who study time use. The study is funded by the Swedish International Development Agency, though the grant money I have devoted for the app is pretty nominal.
change mailing list

Reply via email to