Title page for ETD etd-09252008-151526

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Muchawaya, Davidzo
Email upetd@up.ac.za
URN etd-09252008-151526
Document Title Energy consumption patterns in rural Zimbabwe with special reference to the role of electricity as a development incentive
Degree MSocSci : Community Development
Department Anthropology and Archaeology
Advisor Name Title
Prof J D Kriel Committee Chair
  • electricity
  • energy
  • environment
  • firewood
  • gender
  • poverty
  • rural
  • Zimbabwe
  • deforestation
  • development
  • consumption
Date 2008-04-17
Availability restricted
This dissertation presents an analysis of electrification and energy consumption patterns in rural areas arguing that the socio-economic aspects of electrification and energy consumption in rural areas have not received adequate attention. Against this background, the study investigates the energy consumption patterns of rural households in Zimbabwe with special reference to the role of electricity as a development incentive. The qualitative design was used in this research because the relevant phenomena had to be studied in the natural and context-specific settings. Field research methods that were utilised include interviews, participant observation, life histories, case studies as well as focus group discussions. The main energy consumption theories are elucidated and the current energy consumption patterns are discussed in detail. It was found that very little has been done to encourage rural electrification beneficiaries to use electricity for more than lighting purposes. Much is still to be done to educate the rural populace on the importance of energy and the detrimental effects of indoor air pollution. The issue of gender inequalities is also addressed. Women still remain under-represented and marginalised despite the fact that they have to bear the brunt of indoor air pollution and are sexually harassed when they gather firewood in areas far away from their homes. The study concludes that energy is an important aspect of development and recommends that rural electrification be viewed as an effective incentive for development.

University of Pretoria 2007


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