RWSN Themes

Sustainable Services

With more water infrastructure and management structures in place in many countries, there is a need to focus on strengthening mechanisms and approaches for ensuring that systems provide sustainable rural water services that meet norms and standards in terms of quantity, quality, reliability and accessibility, to meet the criteria of the human right to safe water. This implies clearly mandated service providers carry out operation, maintenance and administrative functions and that they are overseen and supported by relevant service authorities. Furthermore, these need for financing mechanisms to cover all life-cycle costs related to the provision of sustainable water supply services.

The Sustainable Services theme of RWSN brings together sector professionals with an interest in sharing, understanding and defining management and support arrangements. The theme builds on previous work done within RWSN, including work on the supply chains for spare parts and the development of frameworks for operation and maintenance.

In the 2015-2017 strategy, the focus is on:

Professionalisation

For this topic, emphasis will be on facilitating a sector discussion on the future of rural water services and the role of community management, building on the 2013 Webinar Series and the session at the 2013 World Water Week in Stockholm. The topic professionalisation covers all technologies used for rural water supplies.

Financing life-cycle costs

Emphasis will be on enhancing capacity in the sector to undertake lifecycle costing as well as asset management for rural water supply, and the use of this in planning and budgeting at local government level. Building on the outcomes of the 2014 e-discussion on local governments, advocacy messages will be developed on the need for public financing of local government to play its designated role in water service provision.

 

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Useful Links


Related Resources

Proceedings of the 7th RWSN Forum

29 Nov - 2 Dec 2016, Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire

The 2016 Rural Water Supply Network Forum in Abidjan was the first global gathering to consider the practical challenge of how everyone worldwide can get access to safe, affordable water by 2030. It was also the first RWSN Forum to take place in a francophone country, in the 25 years since the creation of the network.
The Forum gathered 467 rural water sector practitioners from over 300 organisations from 64 countries in Africa, Asia, Americas, and Europe, in a bilingual (English/French) four day event. It was opened by the Prime Minister of Côte d’Ivoire, Mr Daniel Kaplan Duncan. We were joined by HE State Minster James Dengchol Tot, Minister of Water, Irrigation and Electricity of Ethiopia, as well as a delegation from AMCOW.

This Forum proceedings compiles all peer-reviewed materials. Separate downloads and links to the films can be found at: https://rwsn7.net/content/ | more information »

Local Government and Rural Water Services that last: a way forward

Rural Water Supply Reality Check

This paper is a synthesis of the major themes discussed during the local government e-discussion held during May 2015, which included 75 contributions from 58 people presenting experiences in English, French and Spanish and cases from 43 different countries from across the globe. Each week focused on a specific theme. Dedicated week facilitators introduced the theme in the beginning of the week, led the discussion during the week and summarised the main discussion points at the end of the week. The paper highlights the discussed role local government can and does play in ensuring sustainable water service provision, the challenges that local government is facing in fulfilling these roles and responsibilities, and the opportunities for overcoming these challenges. | more information »

Rural Water Supply Network - Annual Report 2016

Enabling practitioners, professionals and ultimately water users to make informed decisions on how to improve and maintain access to safe water in rural areas.

The focus for the Rural Water Supply Network (RWSN) in 2016 was preparing for, and managing the 7th RWSN Forum in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, from 29th November to 2nd December with the title “Water for Everyone”. This was the first RWSN Forum to take place in a francophone country in the 25 years since the creation of the network.

Throughout 2016 specific in-country activities included a short-course on Procurement, Contract Management and Costing and Pricing in Zambia and a participative analysis of Manual Drilling in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Workshops organized by the World Bank in Bangkok and Lima on sustainable services drew together government agencies in both regions. Key lessons from both events fed into the RWSN Forum under the RWSN Theme “Sustainable Services”.

RWSN continued to work on strengthening the links between research and practice on groundwater by disseminating the outputs from UPGro (Unlocking the Potential of Groundwater for the Poor) research to the RWSN membership as well as fostering direct linkages between groundwater experts and water supply professionals. | more information »

HOW TO ESTABLISH A FULL COST RECOVERY WATER SUPPLY SYSTEM ? WHAT ARE THE KEY FACTORS FOR SUCCESS AND REPLICATION ?

SDC Briefing Note

This Briefing Note outlines the results from more than 15 years of experience in both Tajikistan and Uzbekistan by the International Secretariat for Water (ISW) funded by the Swiss Agency for Development & Cooperation (SDC).
The note outlines the ways in which cost recovery has been been acheived and social tariffs set locally. However when it comes to scaling up there are certainly many hindering factors, not the least being the centralised structure of the States apparatus and deciding power.
It is essential to overcome political tariff challenges as there is resistance that can emerge from a heavy centralised past and the belief that at local level things cannot work properly without keeping them under central control. | more information »

Revues Sectorielles Conjointes sur l'eau, l'assainissement et l'hygiène (WASH)

PRATIQUE D'USAGE DE LA BANQUE MONDIALE EN FAVEUR DE L'EAU: NOTE D'APPRENTISSAGE

L'amélioration de l'eau, l'assainissement et l'hygiène (WASH) dans les États à revenu faible ou intermédiaire, plus particulièrement les États fragiles, ou ceux qui souffrent de crises prolongées, est grand défi.
Au cours de la dernière décennie,les revues sectorielles conjointes (JSR) ont émergé comme un moyen de coordination des parties prenantes,d'apprentissage commun,de collecte de données, de prise de décision et de construction de consensus, de partenariats et de mandats d'action. Les JSR offrent une opportunité de renforcement de la gouvernance et d'augmentation d'impact.
Dans les pays où plusieurs bailleurs de fonds financent la WASH et ne fournissent pas un appui budgétaire général, les JSR sont l'un des rares mécanismes pouvant susciter la responsabilité mutuelle au niveau des pays | more information »

Rainwater Harvesting in Thailand: Learning from the World Champions

RWSN Field Note 2016-1

This field note provides an overview and analysis of the historic developments of promoting Domestic Rainwater Harvesting (DRWH) in Thailand between 1980 and 2015. Based on literature reviews and interviews with stakeholders a series of factors were identified which made the promotion of DRWH in Thailand an exceptionally successful example of diffusion of innovations. Among the key factors identified were policies, market structure, pre-existing habits, affordability, supply chain and climate. No single factor was decisive but several of them occurring simultaneously made it possible for an enabling environment to form and make the initiative flourish even after government funding ran out (most of the Thai Jars, which are most commonly used for rainwater storage, were actually delivered through the private sector and paid by the consumers).
In spite of its large-scale success, the Thai Jar Experience is not a blueprint for replication elsewhere but points out to the importance of cultural and economic aspects, as well as to an enabling environment in general. | more information »

Wider Asia and Pacific Regional Learning Event on Service Delivery Approach to Rural Water Supply

Presentations

The RWSN Asia-Pacific Learning event was held in Bangkok, hosted by The World Bank, SNV and WaterAid Australia. 57 delegates from 14 governments attended to share knowledge and expertise on rural water services. | more information »

Review of Self-supply and its support services in African countries

Synthesis Report

Over the past decades, in many countries, significant progress has been achieved in improving access to rural water supplies. However, it will be almost impossible to reach universal access by using community supply models alone, as this approach will simply be too costly. For achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and ensuring universal access to water for all, new approaches and a shift in mindset and policies are needed. Supported Self-supply is a very cost effective service delivery approach which is complementary to communal supplies, is aligned with Human Rights principles, supports equity and inclusiveness and achieving several SDGs.
This Synthesis report summarises the results of a UNICEF funded review of supported Self-supply in Zambia and in Zimbabwe which was conducted in 2015 and reflects on findings from discussions at national workshops in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Malawi and from a webinar on supported Self-supply and Human Rights to Water organized by the Rural Water Supply Network (RWSN). | more information »

Private Sector Provision of Rural Water Services

A desk study for Water for People

Community-based management remains the dominant approach to rural water supplies in Africa, Asia and Latin
America, though private sector provision is growing in importance

Self-supply offers a low-cost way to expand privately-managed supplies at a household level, though, with the notable exception of Zimbabwe, few formal initiatives have been scaled up beyond a pilot stage

Despite being the most common mode of rural water supply, handpumps are rarely managed by the private sector

Privately operated decentralised water treatment kiosks have emerged over the last decade (chiefly in India), though at this early stage have captured only a small share of the rural water market

Operation of piped schemes serving small towns is the most common modality of private sector involvement in rural water supplies

Full recovery of capital costs through user fees appears to be rare, particularly in rural Africa, thus widespread capital investment by private enterprises and entrepreneurs remains unlikely without external subsidies | more information »

Unlocking the Potential of Information Communications Technology to Improve Water and Sanitation Services

WSP Report

This knowledge product is a summary of ndings from the Water and Sanitation Program (WSP) Study “Unlocking the Potential of ICT Services in the Water and Sanitation Sector”. e study builds on and complements the World Bank’s Africa Regional Strategy (2011) as well as the World Bank Group’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Strategy (2012). It further complements the E-Transform Africa series, a collaboration between the African Development Bank, the World Bank and the African Union, which captures the existing use of ICTs in six sectors (agriculture, climate change, education, health, nancial services, government) and two cross-cutting themes (regional trade and integration; ICT competitiveness). | more information »