Preference Heterogeneity and Adoption of Environmental Health Improvements: Evidence from a Cookstove Promotion Experiment
45 Pages Posted: 4 Sep 2014
Date Written: September 2, 2014
Household preferences should influence adoption of environmental health-improving technologies, but there has been limited empirical research to isolate their importance, perhaps due to challenges of measurement and attribution. This paper explores heterogeneity in household preferences for different features of improved cookstoves (ICS) and assesses the degree to which these preferences are associated with actual adoption of electric and biomass-burning cookstoves during a randomized stove promotion campaign in northern India. Latent class analysis of data from a discrete choice experiment conducted in baseline surveys of 1,060 households identified three preference types: disinterested (54%), low demand but primarily interested in reduced smoke emissions (27%), and high demand with interest in most features of the ICS (20%). The ICS intervention, which was stratified according to communities’ prior history of interactions with the NGO marketing the stoves, was then randomized to 762 of these households. The main findings are that households in the disinterested class are less likely to purchase an ICS, that preference class is more strongly related to stove purchase than common sociodemographic drivers of technology adoption identified in the literature, and that distaste for smoke emissions appears to be a particularly strong driver for adoption of an electric ICS.
Keywords: Improved cookstoves, discrete choice experiment, latent class analysis, field experiment, India
JEL Classification: C93, D12, Q41, Q53
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation