Funny question: Anyone doing "scholarly" research on the CD cottage industry? - Mothering Forums
 
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#1 of 7 Old 09-25-2004, 02:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've been CDing for 4 months, and just loving it. I'm intrigued by the entire culture of the on-line cloth diapering community, and in particular, the business aspects of the cottage industry for cloth diapers. WAHMs and marketing, use of the internet, the trade/barter process for used diapers, pricing, product development, cloth diapering movement in the US/other countries, political/social/economic forces at work, etc.

I've always known I would go back to get my doctorate degree - and since becoming a mama I've thought it would be something related to women's studies in speech communication. I've seriously become intrigued with specifically cloth diapers, and their myriad of implications at so many levels (communication and business/economics/social/political). Is anyone on this board or that you know of in your life conducting empirical research on any aspect of the cloth diapering industry? I would love to see some journal articles or conference presentations that relate to this - particularly in the area of communication or business/cottage industry or sociology....

Thanks in advance!
Becky
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#2 of 7 Old 09-25-2004, 03:43 PM
 
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ooohhhh, intriguing question Becky! I haven't seen anything- have you done any internet searches?
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#3 of 7 Old 09-25-2004, 04:41 PM
 
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I'm sooooooo interested to see what you find. :
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#4 of 7 Old 09-25-2004, 04:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I teach at a local comm college so I'm going to connect through their subscribed databases and do some searches on peer-reviewed journals ... thought I would check here, too to see what I could find. When I do my search, I'll let you know what I dig up....

PhD, here I come....
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#5 of 7 Old 09-25-2004, 05:54 PM
 
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Sound very interesting, I can't wait to hear what you come up with. And congrats on going for your doctorate

Non Practicing Midwife, going back to school! Mamma to my 3 loves, living each day to the fullest.
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#6 of 7 Old 09-25-2004, 06:21 PM
 
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Very cool idea. I just wanted to note two (unscholarly) observations. When living in Wales, we witnessed the rise of the Real Nappy Association and the start of goverment incentive programs. The change seems to have been huge. How interesting it would be to delve into the numbers... And we can hope that the Real Diaper Association along with magazines like Mothering keeps up the growing trend here.

My other observation comes from personal experience of having a small diaper company. Basically, as you know, the profit margin for most of the designs and makes out there, is small. I would think that is a major contributor to the growth of cottage industry wherein you have a diaper maker who is the diaper retailer. We are certainly looking in that direction as a possibility for growth. Then you also have the social side of a pleasant and enriching business culture.

Very interesting project. Good luck.
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#7 of 7 Old 09-26-2004, 12:03 AM
 
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I haven't seen any academic research on the adoption of cloth diapering or the CD community, but I agree it's really interesting. I've thought about doing some research on it because I'm getting my Ph.D. in social psychology and I'm interested in factors that support or hinder people from engaging in pro-environmental behaviors - such as CDing. But I haven't gotten around to it yet. If you're interested in a sociological perspective on adoption of new behaviors such as cloth diapering, I'd suggest checking out:

Rogers, E.M. 1995. Diffusion of Innovations. (book)

Good luck with your research and graduate school - I'd love to hear about it!
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