LCT Project Survey Report: Progress, challenges and lessons learnt to date

Author(s): Cheruiyot, Mourine (African Centre for Technology Studies)

Publication date: January 2016

Publication type: Report


The low cost energy efficient products for the bottom of the pyramid project, or LCT for short, is a project which focuses the development of energy efficient diagnostic medical technologies, solar e-cookers, water purifiers and solar water pumps. In so doing, it aims to understand the demand from low income consumer segments (notably those labelled ‘the bottom of the pyramid') with respect to low-cost energy-efficient technologies, and how such products can be sustainably developed and deployed in developing countries to have largescale impact.

One of the first activities undertaken by the project was a series of consumer surveys to gather data on which aspects of particular technologies are important to the user. The results from these surveys will feed into the design phase of the technologies being promoted. Specifically, the survey was designed using choice modelling methodology which asks respondents to consider what parameters of a technology are important across a series of combinations.

The survey was designed and developed by Gamos Ltd, UK with assistance from the African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS), Kenya assisting with the collection of survey data. The survey collected data on the two types of technologies being focused on by the project: medical and domestic. As such, two surveys were developed one focused on nurse/clinicians based in resource poor clinics across Kenya, and the other, focused on households in Kenya.

The nurse survey target was 400 nurses or clinicians working in predominately rural clinics across four locations in Kenya (Kirinyaga, Marsabit, Malindi and a national nurses’ conference in Kisumu averaging 100 surveys in each place. This medical survey focused on four medical devices relating to essential diagnostics, blood and urine tests, ultrasound and IT solutions for health facilities.

The household survey targeted 400 participants across four locations – Kirinyaga, Marsabit, Malindi and Nairobi – again 100 surveys per location on average. This survey asked questions with regards parameters of solar cookers, solar fridges and to a much lesser extent water purification options. In addition, an additional element was added to the domestic survey focused specifically on farmers based in Kenya’s central region who irrigated their farms from rivers at the bottom of hills. This involved surveying an additional 300 respondents in Karinyaga county.

The majority of the data collection activities were completed by the close of 2015. By this time, all community surveys (households and farmers) had been completed and half of the health surveys were completed. The health surveys have proven extremely difficult to arrange due to the remoteness of the rural health clinics. In addition, no health surveys were possible in Marsabit in rural clinics because of an increase in insecurity in the county. As such the final health surveys will be completed in January 2016.

This short paper provides an overview of the data collection activities to date and lessons learnt from these activities.


The full report can be viewed here