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Risk and benefit judgment of excreta as fertilizer in agriculture: An exploratory investigation in Rwanda and Uganda
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Urban Planning and Environment, Urban and Regional Studies. Stockholm Environment Institute, Sweden. (PROUD)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9340-4391
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2016 (English)In: Human and Ecological Risk Assessment, ISSN 1080-7039, E-ISSN 1549-7860, Vol. 22, no 3, 639-666 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This research explores the use of psychometric techniques to improve understanding of psychological mechanisms underlying judgment of excreta as fertilizer in agriculture including other excreta related activities. Participants consisted of environmental health students, smallholder farmers and traders in rural and urban Rwanda and Uganda. The finding reveals an inverse relationship between risk and benefit judgments. This relationship holds for the three groups of participants with significant risk-benefit correlations of p<.0001. This finding is consistent with other studies showing that affect plays a key role in risk perception, judgment and decision making.Building on this finding, we conclude that individuals with high risk and low benefit judgment for excreta related practices would eschew them or emphasize strict standards. Individuals with a high benefit and low risk judgment would engage in excreta management practices regardless of the actual risks involved. This finding is relevant for risk communication and risk management as it indicates that individuals do not rely only on risk management information they receive concerning excreta and related risks but also depend to an extent on their feelings about these substances when making judgments and decisions regarding the purpose for using excreta as fertilizer and the level of exposure they can tolerate and manage.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2016. Vol. 22, no 3, 639-666 p.
Keyword [en]
Excreta, Fertilizer, Affect, Risk, Benefit, Judgment
National Category
Agricultural Science
Research subject
Planning and Decision Analysis
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-179467DOI: 10.1080/10807039.2015.1100515ISI: 000371914500005ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84960369901OAI: diva2:883352
Water and Health: Where Science Meets Policy, Chapel HillGlobal Dry Toilet Conference, Tampere
Swedish Research Council, 2013–6364Lars Hierta Memorial Foundation, FO2010-0322 and FO2011-0501

Funding also from: Kungl. Skogs och Lantbruksakademien (H10-0233-ADA-01).

Travel grants were also provided by Stiftelsen Futura.

QC 20160411

Available from: 2015-12-17 Created: 2015-12-17 Last updated: 2016-10-10Bibliographically approved

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