My colleagues at Oxford and I are investigating the effects that inadequate sanitary care provisions may have on girls’ educational achievements in the developing world. We completed one study in Ghana in 2009 and have begun new studies in Uganda. We are looking at the relationship between menstruation and education generally, while also investigating various methods for meeting girls’ needs for sanitary care. We also studying the impact of household purchasing priorities on girls’ access to adequate sanitary provisions.
There are various papers surrounding this project: the initial report, a teaching case, a Plos publication, and a working paper in review at Journal of Consumer Research. We now have an extension of this study in the field in Uganda. In addition, we have undertaken further research in east Africa on environmentally friendly alternatives. Details of that test are available in six instalments on the blog, but the results have not yet been reported.
Procter and Gamble’s Always campaign in Africa illustrates the problem menstrual care presents for schoolgirls in an upbeat way. In my travels in Africa, I have seen that many people like this spot. Watch the “Check No Stain” advertisement below: