P3 Ghana Cookstove Study


Background: Despite their potential health and social benefits, adoption and use of improved cookstoves has been low throughout much of the world. Explanations for low adoption rates of these technologies include prices that are not affordable for the target populations, limited opportunities for households to learn about cookstoves through peers, and perceptions that these technologies are not appropriate for local cooking needs. The P3 project employs a novel experimental design to explore each of these factors and their interactive effects on cookstove demand, adoption, use and exposure outcomes. Methods: The P3 study is being conducted in the Kassena-Nankana Districts of Northern Ghana. Leveraging an earlier improved cookstove study that was conducted in this area, the central design of the P3 biomass stove experiment involves offering stoves at randomly varying prices to peers and non-peers of households that had previously received stoves for free. Using household surveys, electronic stove use monitors, and low-cost, portable monitoring equipment, we measure how prices and peers' experience affect perceptions of stove quality, the decision to purchase a stove, use of improved and traditional stoves over time, and personal exposure to air pollutants from the stoves. Discussion: The challenges that public health and development communities have faced in spreading adoption of potentially welfare-enhancing technologies, like improved cookstoves, have highlighted the need for interdisciplinary, multisectoral approaches. The design of the P3 project draws on economic theory, public health practice, engineering, and environmental sciences, to more fully grasp the drivers and barriers to expanding access to and uptake of cleaner stoves. Our partnership between academic institutions, in the US and Ghana, and a local environmental non-governmental organization creates unique opportunities to disseminate and scale up lessons learned.

Full Title of Study: “Prices, Peers, and Perceptions: Field Experiments on Technology Adoption in the Context of Improved Cookstoves”

Study Type

  • Study Type: Interventional
  • Study Design
    • Allocation: Randomized
    • Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
    • Primary Purpose: Prevention
    • Masking: None (Open Label)
  • Study Primary Completion Date: April 1, 2019


  • Behavioral: P3 Bio Intervention
    • Two types of improved biomass burning cookstoves (ACE1 and Greenway Jumbo) are offered to participants in both arms at varying prices.

Arms, Groups and Cohorts

  • Experimental: S1 (Peer) group
    • S1 group households located in 25 clusters that were included in a prior cookstove study: selected households are nearest neighbors (peers) of households who received free stoves in that prior study. This group is used to represent a potentially high peer influence on the adoption of improved cookstoves. The P3 Bio Intervention is implemented in this group.
  • Experimental: S2 (Non-Peer) Group
    • S2 group households are located in 25 clusters randomly selected from the area of the K-N Districts more than 1 km from the S1 clusters. This group will have minimal prior knowledge of the cookstoves through peers. The P3 Bio Intervention is implemented in this group.

Clinical Trial Outcome Measures

Primary Measures

  • Stove Purchases | Number of households that order stoves and complete payments
    • Time Frame: up to 13 months
    • Number of households in each arm that place orders for and subsequently complete all payments on the two types of stoves.

Secondary Measures

  • Cooking Behaviors | Household use of both traditional and improved cookstoves over time
    • Time Frame: up to 13 months
    • Use of traditional and improved stoves over time across intervention arms.
  • Perceptions of Stove Quality | Smoke production, efficiency, ease of use, quality of food, etc.
    • Time Frame: up to 13 months
    • Likert-scale and subjective expectation questions measuring perceptions of stove quality / performance for both stove types along multiple dimensions. Example scale question: “How much smoke do you think the ACE1 stove would produce?” Response options: 1 = A lot less smoke than a 3 stone fire, 2 = A little less smoke than a 3 stone fire; 3 = About the same amount of smoke as a 3 stone fire; 4 = A little more smoke than a 3 stone fire; 5 = A lot more smoke than a 3 stone fire; 99 = Don’t know / not sure.
  • Exposure to CO and PM 2.5
    • Time Frame: up to 13 months
    • Kitchen concentrations of and personal exposure to carbon monoxide (CO) and particular matter (PM2.5) among study participants

Participating in This Clinical Trial

Inclusion Criteria

  • Classified as "rural" – Uses biofuel as main cooking fuel source – Has women in household aged 18-55 and at least one child under five Exclusion Criteria:

  • Clusters that are close to the S1 clusters, creating a set of clusters far enough from the original R group that will create the S2 cluster.

Gender Eligibility: Female

Minimum Age: 18 Years

Maximum Age: 55 Years

Are Healthy Volunteers Accepted: Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Investigator Details

  • Lead Sponsor
    • University of Colorado, Denver
  • Collaborator
    • University of Colorado, Boulder
  • Provider of Information About this Clinical Study
    • Sponsor
  • Overall Official(s)
    • Katherine L Dickinson, PhD, Principal Investigator, Unviersity of Colorado, Aurora

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