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Puce Philippe LeMay-Boucher (Heriot Watt University, UK)

mardi 10 octobre 2017

Social Interaction and Technology Adoption: Experimental Evidence from Improved Cookstoves in Mali
Résumé : We conduct a field experiment in neighborhoods of Bamako inviting women to training sessions, which provided information on more efficient cooking stove technology and offered participants a chance to purchase an improved cookstove at market price. After mapping the social network of the participants, we randomly provided an information nudge on a peer’s willingness to buy an improved cookstove or past purchasing (ownership) behavior. We find that participants adopt and use the product more when the peer mentioned purchased (or previously owned) an improved stove and is viewed as respected. We identify direct and spillover effects of attending the session, which we argue proves effective in lowering transaction costs. We also investigate whether social interaction plays a role in technology diffusion. By exploiting the sampling strategy, we use the density of women invited to our training session at different geographical distances as an instrument for the number of women owning the product. We find that women who participated in the session, but did not buy during the intervention are more likely to adopt the product when more women living around them own it. We investigate the mechanisms and provide evidence supporting imitation effects, rather than social learning.

Homepage : https://www.hw.ac.uk/schools/social-sciences/staff-directory/philippe-lemay-boucher.htm