Estimating household water use: A comparison of diary, prompted recall, and free recall methods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Studies of household water use are often based on retrospective behavioral reports, which are vulnerable to threats to informant accuracy. This article compares three methods for collecting household water use data: a diary, prompted recall, and free recall. The analyses are based on data from seventy-two randomly selected households in Cochabamba, Bolivia. Per capita water use estimates based on the three methods were significantly different. When compared against known parameters, the diary provided the most accurate estimate of household water use. The prompted recall method yielded similar results to the diary method on hygienic and food preparation tasks, but there were significant differences on household cleaning tasks. The free recall method significantly underestimated water use. There were not significant differences in water use assessments within households, but there was variation in misestimation across households. The article discusses which participants (e.g., heads of less water-consumptive households) provided more reliable water use estimates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-68
Number of pages20
JournalField Methods
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009

Fingerprint

water
Bolivia
threat
food

Keywords

  • Bolivia
  • Data quality
  • Recall
  • Survey
  • Validity
  • Water use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology

Cite this

Estimating household water use : A comparison of diary, prompted recall, and free recall methods. / Wutich, Amber.

In: Field Methods, Vol. 21, No. 1, 2009, p. 49-68.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{ac16840498a8435d878b241fa26c3bb4,
title = "Estimating household water use: A comparison of diary, prompted recall, and free recall methods",
abstract = "Studies of household water use are often based on retrospective behavioral reports, which are vulnerable to threats to informant accuracy. This article compares three methods for collecting household water use data: a diary, prompted recall, and free recall. The analyses are based on data from seventy-two randomly selected households in Cochabamba, Bolivia. Per capita water use estimates based on the three methods were significantly different. When compared against known parameters, the diary provided the most accurate estimate of household water use. The prompted recall method yielded similar results to the diary method on hygienic and food preparation tasks, but there were significant differences on household cleaning tasks. The free recall method significantly underestimated water use. There were not significant differences in water use assessments within households, but there was variation in misestimation across households. The article discusses which participants (e.g., heads of less water-consumptive households) provided more reliable water use estimates.",
keywords = "Bolivia, Data quality, Recall, Survey, Validity, Water use",
author = "Amber Wutich",
year = "2009",
doi = "10.1177/1525822X08325673",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "21",
pages = "49--68",
journal = "Field Methods",
issn = "1525-822X",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc.",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Estimating household water use

T2 - A comparison of diary, prompted recall, and free recall methods

AU - Wutich, Amber

PY - 2009

Y1 - 2009

N2 - Studies of household water use are often based on retrospective behavioral reports, which are vulnerable to threats to informant accuracy. This article compares three methods for collecting household water use data: a diary, prompted recall, and free recall. The analyses are based on data from seventy-two randomly selected households in Cochabamba, Bolivia. Per capita water use estimates based on the three methods were significantly different. When compared against known parameters, the diary provided the most accurate estimate of household water use. The prompted recall method yielded similar results to the diary method on hygienic and food preparation tasks, but there were significant differences on household cleaning tasks. The free recall method significantly underestimated water use. There were not significant differences in water use assessments within households, but there was variation in misestimation across households. The article discusses which participants (e.g., heads of less water-consumptive households) provided more reliable water use estimates.

AB - Studies of household water use are often based on retrospective behavioral reports, which are vulnerable to threats to informant accuracy. This article compares three methods for collecting household water use data: a diary, prompted recall, and free recall. The analyses are based on data from seventy-two randomly selected households in Cochabamba, Bolivia. Per capita water use estimates based on the three methods were significantly different. When compared against known parameters, the diary provided the most accurate estimate of household water use. The prompted recall method yielded similar results to the diary method on hygienic and food preparation tasks, but there were significant differences on household cleaning tasks. The free recall method significantly underestimated water use. There were not significant differences in water use assessments within households, but there was variation in misestimation across households. The article discusses which participants (e.g., heads of less water-consumptive households) provided more reliable water use estimates.

KW - Bolivia

KW - Data quality

KW - Recall

KW - Survey

KW - Validity

KW - Water use

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=59349105561&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=59349105561&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/1525822X08325673

DO - 10.1177/1525822X08325673

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:59349105561

VL - 21

SP - 49

EP - 68

JO - Field Methods

JF - Field Methods

SN - 1525-822X

IS - 1

ER -