This paper outlines a five year investigation which aimed to develop a measurement to predict community intended behaviour in relation to the reuse of wastewater. It has been apparent that communities support the concept of water reuse as a means of responsible water resources management. However, reactions from people when it comes to actually using the recycled water are frequently quite different, particularly when it involves close personal contact or ingestion of the water. Little has been known of how people make their decisions to accept or reject schemes. Therefore, a research program was designed to systematically identify, measure and test the major factors that govern people's decision-making. A social experiment was designed whereby a large group of random community members participated in tasting and swallowing what they believed to be recycled water from different sources and products grown with recycled waters. This provided an immediate experience for the development of measures of psychological and other factors in decisions to taste and/or swallow. This then formed the basis for whole of city surveys which tested and refined an hypothesised model of intended behaviour, and three case studies over time which sought to replicate the model.
What drives communities' decisions and behaviours in the reuse of wastewater
B. E. Nancarrow, Z. Leviston, M. Po, N. B. Porter, D. I. Tucker; What drives communities' decisions and behaviours in the reuse of wastewater. Water Sci Technol 1 March 2008; 57 (4): 485–491. doi: https://doi.org/10.2166/wst.2008.160
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