Solar Power at Ghanaian Hospitals: To Choose or not to Choose?

In this video with Ana Maria Perez Arredondo, you learn more about the qualitative research at the EnerSHelF project. She and her team interview 200 managers of health facilities in Ghana.

By clicking on continue reading →, you can see the transcript of the interview below.

Video transcript

Have you ever experienced going out of power when you needed the most? Now, imagine that you are the head of a health facility in Ghana that has to solve a problem – two hours of blackouts every day! The main concern of the EnerSHelF Project is to provide solutions to the energy problems of health facilities by combining the efforts of researchers, policy makers, and private actors. I work for the Sub-working package 1.2, where we look at the factors that influence the diffusion of new technologies. But what does that mean?

Going back to our previous scenario, imagine that you are the head of a health facility in Ghana. Would you prioritize investments in technologies that can make electricity more reliable? Would you rather invest your limited funds in technologies for electricity production that are environmental-friendly? Would you focus on technologies that make electricity more affordable? Or would you rather stay as you are, expecting that the government will be able to solve soon the issue of the blackouts?

On this background, the work of my team is to ask those same questions to the managers of 200 health facilities, covering the coastal area, the middle belt, and the northern areas of Ghana so that we can have data representing the whole country.

Some words about my research team: It is comprised by myself at the Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg in Germany, by Kennedy Alatinga at the SD Dombo University of Business and Integrated Development Studies in Wa – they work with the University of Development Studies in Tamale. And we also have ten research assistants. They are the ones that are going to be asking the health managers those four questions that I brought to you at the beginning.

After receiving the different answers, we will look closely at a set of indicators that include:

  • Socio-economic factors
  • Environmental conditions
  • Experience with energy generation technologies
  • Information about technologies
  • Support programs available
  • Financial and technical capacities

among others.

This analysis will allow us to know why some people would prioritize reliability, environmental outcomes, or affordability, when choosing to invest [or not] in technologies for electricity generation. We are going to start soon the data collection, so hopefully before the end of the summer we will have the first results.

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