Fieldwork-based determination of design priorities for point-of-use drinking water quality sensors for use in resource-limited environments

Autoři: Michael S. Bono, Jr. aff001;  Sydney Beasley aff002;  Emily Hanhauser aff001;  A. John Hart aff001;  Rohit Karnik aff001;  Chintan Vaishnav aff002
Působiště autorů: Department of Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United States of America aff001;  Tata Center for Technology and Design, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United States of America aff002;  Technology and Policy Program, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United States of America aff003;  Department of Urban Studies and Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United States of America aff004;  Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United States of America aff005
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 15(1)
Kategorie: Research Article


Improved capabilities in microfluidics, electrochemistry, and portable assays have resulted in the development of a wide range of point-of-use sensors intended for environmental, medical, and agricultural applications in resource-limited environments of developing countries. However, these devices are frequently developed without direct interaction with their often-remote intended user base, creating the potential for a disconnect between users’ actual needs and those perceived by sensor developers. As different analytical techniques have inherent strengths and limitations, effective measurement solution development requires determination of desired sensor attributes early in the development process. In this work, we present our findings on design priorities for point-of-use microbial water sensors based on fieldwork in rural India, as well as a guide to fieldwork methodologies for determining desired sensor attributes. We utilized group design workshops for initial identification of design priorities, and then conducted choice-based conjoint analysis interviews for quantification of user preferences among these priorities. We found the highest user preference for integrated reporting of contaminant concentration and recommended actions, as well as significant preferences for mostly reusable sensor architectures, same-day results, and combined ingredients. These findings serve as a framework for future microbial sensor development and a guide for fieldwork-based understanding of user needs.

Klíčová slova:

Contaminants – Ecological remediation – Electrochemistry – Sanitation – Water pollution – Water quality – Water resources – Workshops


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