Research Projects

On the research front, four major projects have been conducted by IWSA members outside the domain of their regular work and with funding from different government and private agencies:

(i) Integrated approach for tribal welfare with respect to women and children: Convenor : K. Ranadive (1981-1999). This project conducted in tribal areas of the Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra, with funding from different government agencies, looked at health profiles of the tribal population. A variety of health problems among tribals, with emphasis on respiratory, gastro-intestinal and reproductive diseases were studied.

(ii) Assessment of indoor pollution in tribal population in western Maharashtra and its effects on health under different conditions of cooking fuel (U. Thakare, J.J. Nadkarni, R.S.Patil and S.C.Gupte) was funded by the Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy Sources, Delhi, in 2000-2003. The results of this study revealed that the concentration of carbon monoxide and respirable particulates was considerably reduced with the use of improved cooking stoves vis-Ă -vis traditional stoves when bio-fuel was used for household cooking purpose. Subsequently, the effects of this fuel on health of women, who are the major casualties in terms of lung functions and circulating immunoglobulin levels, were also monitored. Since several respiratory problems are of chronic nature, the authors recommended long-term studies to assess precise health effects of the use of bio-fuels, using both conventional and improved kitchen stoves.

Over the years, depending on the expertise of members, several other popular science research projects have also been undertaken by different IWSA committees—either by Sunday Science Laboratory/Club, Health Care Centre or Education and Teachers’ Training Committees.

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