Breaking the Silence - Group Discussions, Social Pressure, and the Adoption of Health Technologies
67 Pages Posted: 17 Apr 2022 Last revised: 7 Dec 2022
Date Written: April 11, 2022
Social pressure and stigma can hinder the adoption of available technologies, especially in the context of sensitive health issues. We run a field experiment on the take-up of menstrual products in Bangladesh and test a discussion-based intervention. We vary participation in group discussions designed to break the silence around menstruation, where participants share their personal experiences. We find positive effects on the willingness to pay for a known menstrual product (sanitary pads) and on the adoption of a new technology (anti-bacterial menstrual underwear). Our results show changes in restrictive social norms around purchasing the products and lower perceived stigma around menstruation in general.
Keywords: Social norms, social pressure, stigma, technology adoption, group discussions, menstrual health management, menstrual hygiene, adverse health behavior
JEL Classification: D91, I12, I15, O12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation