8

8. Proposed Methodology and Data Collection
The following section of the project paper will briefly illustrates the detailed existing methods for evaluating the socio-economic costs of electricity supply interruptions and the value of supply security on the ME’s. It is also important to note that the general proposed research approach in phases is illustrated using the graphical representation of the research onion (Saunders, M., Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. 2007) as illustrated in Appendix III:
8.1. Case Studies
The major benefits of this approach is that it is founded on authentic measures instead of theoretical circumstances which makes it unproblematic for electricity customers to give detailed assessments of the costs (World Bank (2008). In spite of this, this approach is restrained by the particular features of the electricity interruptions for instance location, time or period and consequently, it is challenging to take a broad view of the approach (Yin, R. (2008). A further drawback is that given that some of the electricity interruptions are frequently initiated by weather such as lightning or natural disasters like seismic activities, it is regularly unfeasible to segregate the impacts of the power interruptions from the other causes of these instigating events (Telson M. L. 1975).
8.2. Consumer Surveys
Consumer surveys are the utmost frequently utilised approach to assess the costs of a non-market services, such as the costs of supply security, or the willingness to pay for evading electricity interruptions (Abdullah, S. ; Mariel, P. 2010). Fundamentally there are two hypothetical methods have been established as revealed preferences and stated preferences. Some researchers have made known that revealed preferences (market behaviour) delivers a more objective foundation than subjective assessment (surveys) for approximating the cost of electricity interruptions because it depicts what individuals’ practical action than their theoretical feedback
8.3. Ethical Considerations
The author will take the supreme safety measures to protect the rights of the
partakers in the research. Anonymity of interviewees will be ensured by name coding to conceal their identities in the questionnaires. Permission to conduct this research from relevant Malawi authorities such as the Ministry of Energy and Mining will be obtained to protect informants participating in this study.
9. Proposed Structure/ Outline of the study
The study is established with two perspectives in mind. It appears there is no record of a research in Lilongwe of the socio-economic costs of electricity interruptions. Furthermore, because of the unfortunate security condition, low Gross Domestic Product and Human Development Index of Malawi as one of the poorest nations in the world, the soci0-economic information for the Lilongwe region estimated will be tremendously scarce. As a result, this research’s distinctive dataset will have a substantial practical value and could be utilised for future studies (Leedy, P. ; Ormrod, J. 2012) This project research will be structured as follows:
The first part of the work will introduce the Malawi energy sector and its encounters. Established on survey activities on the identified groups and the author´s experience of the power outages situation, socio-economic costs of the electricity blackouts will be assessed. Data on this effect will be assembled by means of survey, semi-interviews, personal observation and significant literature (Fink, A. 2008). The second segment will briefly emphasise on the welfares of having supply to electricity and describes the power blackouts and their descriptions. The third section shall present the reader to the capital city of Malawi, Lilongwe and its political, social, economic and energy sector profile. Segment four will deliver an overview of the literature and the approaches of approximating the costs of electricity blackouts and the willingness to pay for assessing supply security.
A questionnaire and survey design will be created and scrutinised in the later Segments with associated survey outcomes conversed in Section six. The conjoint analysis approach will be utilised to ascertain the legit approximations of the cost of power outages to Lilongwe’s Micro-economic enterprises (Keppel, G. & Wickens, T. 2004) In addition, a production function methodology will be put into operation to the utmost up to date information from the survey to calculate the welfare costs of power outages.
The author intends to develop the willingness to pay for supply electricity indicators for in Section seven by means of interval regression and lastly Segment eight shall address on the research a discussion of the research process and outcomes. The concluding segment will deduce by conversing the outcomes and future development of the circumstances as well as presenting feasible remedies (Bordens, K. & Abbot, B. 2010)
10. The Conclusion
This project paper first emphasised the prevailing electrical interruptions in Malawi which was followed the case study region of Lilongwe’s Central Business Districts through mutually the socio-economic indicators and the existing challenges of the power generation sector impacting the Micro-economic enterprises by the description of literature on the characteristics of power disruptions and the costs and the challenges are associated with them.
The author also introduced the diverse procedural methods for estimating these costs also briefly discussed to pave way for the forthcoming detailed research. The paper further expresses the overall description on the structure of the study. Attributable to low economic and underdeveloped state of the nation of Malawi, the social and economic data for the Lilongwe region on outage supply are exceedingly scarce leading to the existence of many research gap on the subject.
In order to approximate the socio-economic costs of power supply interruption on the ME’s in Lilongwe, the author intends to interview a considerable business to be derived from a survey quantity calculation, consequently generating a distinctive dataset of great value.
10.1. Possible constraints of the Study
The author is aware of the drawbacks and inadequacies although the research may have deemed to be carefully planned and well prepared. The study will be conducted during a short time spell in relation to the magnitude and complexity of the research topics. The short period of time specified to conduct the academic research further causes the population of the research group to be small for easier management which may not represent the majority of the views at national level.
The study conclusion will only be pertained to the ME’s of Lilongwe CBD and therefore cannot be taken into a broad view of entire Malawi. Attributable to limited financial provision, a more widespread survey to guarantee the representativeness of the sample is outside the scope of this study. However, this study will deliver direction towards the prospect evaluation of the price of energy sector dependability.
The projected value of supply security may be used by the government of Malawi through their parastatal in ESCOM and EGENCO when forming decisions concerning adequate power supply, electricity tariff rates and global power contract conditions.
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