Solar Cookers World Network

Promoting solar cooking

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Last updated: 10 April 2017      

Project planning

Determine whether solar cooking is appropriate in your area

Learn from the work of others and make contacts

Data collection for successful solar cooking projects

(The following information is the result of a literature review of solar cooker project evaluations and thirty years of SCI sector experience..)

Data Collection Part I: A necessity, not an option

  1. Include data sharing as part of the project partner selection process. Clearly communicate that data collection and sharing is expected, not optional.
  2. Include a detailed plan for data analysis. Who will collect the data? Where? When? How often?
  3. Have the costs of data collection and project evaluation been included in the project budget and grant applications?
  4. Data quality control: who will follow up if some of the respondents’ answers don’t seem clear?
  5. Solar Cookers International recommends using the SCI Adoption & Impact Survey developed by the global network. It harmonizes with surveys used by cookstove and international organizations.
  6. SCI recommends conducting the baseline survey before starting the intervention. We recommend conducting the post-intervention survey one year after the group began solar cooking.
  7. Add data to CI’s solar cooker distribution map.

Data Collection Part II: Successful Solar Cooking Projects

  1. With the Solar Cooking Adoption and Impact Survey, we recommend doing the baseline survey (before people start solar cooking) and the post distribution questions 1 year after they started solar cooking.
  2. Make sure the data gets added to SCI’s map of solar cooker distribution.
  3. Include evaluation costs in initial project budget and grant applications.
  4. Include agreement to data sharing as part of the initial project participation selection. (participants should understand this is an expectation for being a part of the project)
  5. Include regular meeting times in the project design for the project participants to problem solve, develop community, and share data.
  6. Make sure the surveyor understands the questions and expected answers.
  7. Gather individual personal success stories AND facts and figures. Include requests for photographs and/or video and/or quotes as part of the grant agreement (and budget) with the implementing organization with a specific # and deadline.
  8. Make sure there is a plan for data analysis (who is doing it? Where? When? Is it included in the budget) and data quality control (a way to follow up if some of the respondents answers don’t seem clear or might have been communicated incorrectly).
  9. Make sure there is a way to understand local units of measure of fuel (like bags of crop waste) in universal terms (like kgs).
  10. Consider the format that the survey answers are recorded in. Excel sheets would be much easier for data analysis, but so far I’ve only been able to receive answers in Microsoft word format. Account for time to transfer data from Word to Excel formats if that is the case. If possible, use the Google Form version of the survey (but that requires internet at some point in time).

Access handbooks and training materials

Solar Cooker Project Best Practices Manual
Solar Cooker Project: Best Practices Manual
Jewish World Watch created this manual that details what has been learned that will assure a successful solar cooking project in refugee camps.
Trainers Manual-Teaching Solar Cooking
Trainers Manual: Teaching Solar Cooking - Solar Cookers International
Field Guide-Spreading Solar Cooking
Field Guide: Spreading Solar Cooking - Solar Cookers International
Solar Cookers-How to Make, Use, and Enjoy
About this image
Solar Cookers: How to Make, Use, and Enjoy - Solar Cookers International
This is a handbook published by Solar Cookers International that includes detailed plans for building a CooKit solar panel cooker. (There are also detailed versions in Arabic (Standard, Variation), French, Spanish, and English for Kenya, and Galician.)
Integrated Sustainable Solar Cooking - Instruction leaflet for end users
Integrated Sustainable Solar Cooking - Visual instruction guide - Solar Cookers Netherlands
Construction of Solar Cookers and Driers - Pro-Agro
Construction of Solar Cookers and Driers - Christelle Souriau & David Amelin
This is an excellent overview of solar cooking basics and simple solar cooker and dryer construction methods.
Peace Corps Improved Cookstoves Manual 2013
Peace Corps Improved Cookstoves Manual (2013)
Dari parabolic soalr cooker user manual, 9-8-16

How to Use a Parabolic Solar Cooker (Dari and English) - Grace Magney.

Determine which model(s) to work with

Determine the suitability and availability of materials and components

Information on solar cooking individual foods

Additional technologies to introduce

Fund your project


Audio and video

  • January 2017:
Solar Cookers International All About Access02:02

Solar Cookers International All About Access

Household air pollution: causes and solutions

  • July 2014:
Menzies The most well funded solar cooker program in the world lessons learned from GTZ12:33

Menzies The most well funded solar cooker program in the world lessons learned from GTZ

  • July 2014:
Otte Mapping global impact data for solar cooking a case study05:32

Otte Mapping global impact data for solar cooking a case study

  • July 2014:
Powers The global public image of solar cookers10:44

Powers The global public image of solar cookers

  • July 2014:
Yes We Do Solar Cook04:26

Yes We Do Solar Cook

Additional resources

See also

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