Perceptions of the health effects of stoves in Mongolia

Joanna K Gordon, Nick D Emmel, Semira Manaseki, Jacky Chambers

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    15 Citations (Scopus)


    PURPOSE: The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the views of stove users in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia on how stoves affect their health.

    DESIGN/METHODOLOGY/APPROACH: In this paper focus groups were conducted with improved stove users; traditional stove users; and a mix of traditional and improved stove users. Individual interviews were also held with various types of stove users. A translator moderated all discussions with a questioning route. All discussions were fully transcribed and translated. The transcripts were analysed by identifying common themes in responses to form an emerging theory.

    FINDINGS: The findings in the paper are that all stove users recognised respiratory symptoms caused by stove smoke and other health effects such as warmth, dirt and workload, which they perceived to be important. Stove users had a lack of knowledge about the diseases caused by the smoke. Public health was a key driver for the improved stove project, yet has been neglected in improved stove marketing.

    RESEARCH LIMITATIONS/IMPLICATIONS: The study used in this paper was limited by the language barrier. Some of the meanings of participants' responses may have been lost in translation.

    PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS: This paper has highlighted the importance of the health effects of stove smoke to stove users. Uptake of the improved stoves has been low. Public health should be included in marketing strategies for improved stoves to increase their uptake.

    ORIGINALITY/VALUE: The paper shows that acute respiratory infections are a major cause of mortality world-wide. Indoor air pollution from burning biomass fuels in household stoves causes a significant proportion of respiratory infections. No qualitative research has been published exploring stove users' views on the health effects of stoves. This paper provides an insight into stove users' perceptions for those interested in people-centred approaches to tackling international health issues.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)580-7
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Health, Organization and Management
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2007


    • Air Pollution, Indoor
    • Attitude to Health
    • Cooking
    • Focus Groups
    • Hazardous Substances
    • Health Status Indicators
    • Humans
    • Interviews as Topic
    • Mongolia


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