Author(s): Marie Jürisoo, Fiona Lambe, Matthew Osborne

Year: 2017

In: Energy Research & Social Science, 39 (May 2018), 164–176, online November 2017

DOI: 10.1016/j.erss.2017.11.023

Type: Journal article



Link to SEI authors:

Beyond buying: the application of service design methodology to understand adoption of clean cookstoves in Kenya and Zambia

BCI paper Lusaka 550Listening to stove users is understand drivers of adoption and use. Photo: SEI/Transformator


Mapping user journeys in two African case studies reveals shifting motivations for adoption and long-term use of advanced cookstoves.

For users of traditional biomass cookstoves, shifting to an advanced stove can bring significant health and environmental benefits, but only with proper and consistent use. Despite this, empirical evidence of what drives people to buy an advanced stove, and in particular to keep using advanced stoves, remains limited.

This paper describes two case studies in peri-urban Kiambu County (Kenya) and urban Lusaka (Zambia), where researchers investigated these drivers. They applied service design methodology to build “user journeys”, illustrating the cook’s experience with the technology from the time they first heard about it, through purchase, learning to use it, and eventually making it part of their daily routine.

One finding was that the main factors that influence the initial purchase often do not motivate long-term regular use. The researchers also identifed some key behaviour change techniques that could be applied, primarily by cookstove implementers, at different phases of the user journey to drive up adoption and long-term use. The findings highlight the need to carefully map user journeys in order to understand the complex and changing motivations, and pinpoint where support is most needed to strengthen the change process.

Read the article (external link to journal – open access)

Read about the SEI Initiative on Behaviour and Choice »

Read the photo story "Clearing the smoke" about the research in Lusaka »