Waternomics - Usability Testing and Re-design Recommendation
Waternomics is an ICT enabled end-to-end water resource management project, funded by European commission. The primary goal is to increase water usage awareness among end-user (Irish middle school and college students) and persuading them to consciously utilize water. The project was funded by the european commission. I was involved in the final phase of the project where my main focus was to perform usability testing of the applications developed aiming to increase water awareness, for the pilot site Galway in Ireland.
Behavior change analysis
The global freshwater demand
Galway Pilot site applications
Public Display for University. The National University of Galway Ireland's (NUIG) engineering building was chosen as pilot site for applications designed to increase water awareness among college students.
Public Display for School. The CNAC school in Galway was the chosen pilot site for school children water awareness application.
The ux goals were to,
1. Conduct usability testing for Waternomics applications developed for Irish students (both middle-school children and college students).
2. Analyse the results and identify the motivators for increasing water awareness
3. Provide redesign recommendations for apps
An expert evaluation was conducted to identify interface level errors. Nielsens heuristics was used.
The usability testing was done to identify usability problems and verify whether the system is triggering any water awareness. For Public display for university, the test was conducted with 5 participants (all PhD students from NUIG). For Public display for school the study was done with total 5 participants (2 middle-school children and 3 subject matter experts). The usability testing session lasted for 30 minutes per participant. Methods such as think aloud, observations and semi structured interview were used to test.
Literature study informed us that displays tilted to an angle of 45 degrees provides a natural affordance for users to interact with the display (thereby informing them that the interface is interactive).
The usability testing informed that the interface does not trigger any water awareness (none of the participants mentioned neither about the costs involved in cleaning water nor even the difference between freshwater and drinking water. Participants were also ignorant about the water processes before and after domestic usage)
The stakeholder discussion focused on the information which are to be presented to increase the water awareness among Irish students
Context always tells a story. The pilot site - NUIG in Galway is located right next to a river, the meteorological department of Ireland reports that Galway records rainfall for more than 200 days a year. There was no water bill in Ireland until 2014 and currently there is the right2water silent protest going on against introduction of water bill.
Fogg Behavioural Model was used as the theoritical framewaork in the project
The initial concepts were validated to identify if they trigger any motivation to preserve water.