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Exploring the methodology of participatory design to create appropriate sanitation technologies in rural Malawi

Cole, B., Pinford, J., Ho, G. and Anda, M. (2014) Exploring the methodology of participatory design to create appropriate sanitation technologies in rural Malawi. Journal of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Development, 4 (1). pp. 51-61.

Link to Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.2166/washdev.2013.166
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Abstract

The methodologies of demand-led sanitation programmes (including community-led total sanitation [CLTS] and sanitation marketing) encourage participation of users in the design of appropriate sanitation facilities. There has been limited examination of the application of established methodologies in participatory design in the sanitation sector. This paper describes and reflects upon three case studies that applied established participatory design methodologies (Spinuzzi 2005; IDEO 2009) to create sanitation technologies in rural Malawi. Participants of the design sessions represented two groups: (i) researcher-designers (government staff); and (ii) users (local builders and householders). The methodology created a space to develop a common language between the two groups and allowed an exploration of tensions about the use of sanitation hardware subsidies. The design sessions created a number of innovations including corbelling structures, trapezium shaped bricks and reinforcement of wooden frame structures with sandbags. The paper critically reflects on the processes of participatory design in relation to power, ownership and continued participation

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Engineering and Information Technology
Publisher: IWA Publishing
Copyright: © IWA Publishing 2014.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/21695
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