The effect of water quality testing on household behavior: evidence from an experiment in rural India.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

How does specific information about contamination in a household's drinking water affect water handling behavior? We randomly split a sample of households in rural Andhra Pradesh, India. The treatment group observed a contamination test of the drinking water in their own household storage vessel; while they were waiting for their results, they were also provided with a list of actions that they could take to remedy contamination if they tested positive. The control group received no test or guidance. The drinking water of nearly 90% of tested households showed evidence of contamination by fecal bacteria. They reacted by purchasing more of their water from commercial sources but not by making more time-intensive adjustments. Providing salient evidence of risk increases demand for commercial clean water.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Hamoudi, A; Jeuland, M; Lombardo, S; Patil, S; Pattanayak, SK; Rai, S

Published Date

  • July 2012

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 87 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 18 - 22

PubMed ID

  • 22764286

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC3391047

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1476-1645

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0002-9637

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.4269/ajtmh.2012.12-0051


  • eng