How are the people of Oranmore feeling about the new pilot drone delivery service flying goods to their doorstep?
This is question GMIT student and Oranmore resident Annette Hassett has set to answer in a survey of the Manna drone delivery service is perceived by consumers, businesses users and drone company employees in the area in which she lives.
Annette is conducting the survey as part of her Master of Science in Digital Media & Marketing programme at GMIT Mayo.
She is working in partnership with Manna, the Irish drone delivery service operating a trial in the suburban Oranmore village from local stores and restaurants.
Annette, who approached Manna in February to ask if they would cooperate in the research project, has no affiliation or involvement with the company.
She has lived in the Oranmore community for the past 15 years and, having used the drone delivery service herself, decided to undertake this survey to find out what other people thought about it as part of her postgraduate programme of study in GMIT Mayo.
She said that she is delighted to get the chance to study and evolving technology available where she lives, and hopes that this will contribute to understanding whether drone delivery is just a fad, or a real future industry.
During her initial review of the existing literature on the subject, she came across many articles about resistance to the technology in the US, particularly its use in policing.
“Recurring themes internationally focused on security and privacy breaches around the perceived use of drones,” Annette said.
“However, there seemed to be a lack of academic research published from end users of commercial delivery services.”
The research will be carried out by including a leaflet in each drone delivery, with a QR code to access the survey online, along with Facebook surveys.
Annette will also be carrying out interviews with businesses which have made use of the drone delivery service.
Noreen Henry, GMIT lecturer and project supervisor said “Often digital and technological advancements are happening right in front of us without us realising the potential or consequences for us as individuals and society.”
“The people of Oranmore are experiencing innovation as part of their daily life and it is essential that this piece of technological history is researched and captured for future developments.”
“Annette recognised this opportunity on her own doorstep and had the foresight to integrate the experience of her community into formal academic research that will have future implications reaching far beyond the western region of Ireland.”