Recent sanitation research updates

Building Capacity for Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Programming: Training Evaluation Theory Applied to CLTS Management Training in Kenya. Social Science and Medicine, August 2016. There are many training evaluation methods and tools available. However, such WASH training evaluations have been infrequent and lacked rigor. The authors have developed a conceptual framework for evaluating training in WASH by reviewing and adapting concepts from the literature.

The Addis Agreement: Using CLTS in Urban and Peri-Urban Areas. CLTS Knowledge Hub, August 2016. This paper is the outcome of a 2-day conference in Ethiopia June 13-15, 2016 where participants shared their varied experiences and discussed what value a CLTS approach can bring to the urban context.

Using a CLTS Approach in Peri-Urban and Urban Environments: Potential at Scale. CLTS Knowledge Hub, August, 2016. This Learning Brief summarizes the potential and limitations of using a CLTS approach in peri-urban and urban environments.

Formative Research to Develop Appropriate Participatory Approaches Towards Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene in Rural Areas. India WASH Forum, June 2016. This study was conducted to understand perceptions, barriers, and motivators for improved sanitation behavior in rural India.

Effect of Eliminating Open Defecation on Diarrhoeal Morbidity: An Ecological Study of Nyando and Nambale Sub-Counties, Kenya. BMC Public Health, August 2016. The study found that the two sub-counties with open defecation free status had a lower prevalence of diarrhea compared to sub-counties which were yet to attain open defecation free status.

The Impact of a Rural Sanitation Programme on Safe Disposal of Child Faeces: A Cluster Randomised Trial in Odisha, India. Transactions of the Royal Society Tropical Medicine Hygiene, July 2016. The researchers concluded that to achieve open defecation free communities, sanitation interventions will need to develop behavior change approaches that explicitly target safe disposal behaviors.

USAID – Eco-fuel Africa: charcoal from agricultural waste

Published on Apr 13, 2016

Eco-fuel Africa is a social enterprise determined to eradicate over dependence on wood-fuel in Sub-Saharan Africa by making organic charcoal from agricultural waste. Eco-fuel Africa invented a simple, manual machine that converts agricultural waste into fuel briquettes that burn longer, cleaner and are 20 percent cheaper than wood fuel.

USAID APHIAplus -Community-led sanitation in Nakuru County, Kenya

Published on Aug 3, 2016

APHIAplus Nuru ya Bonde project works with technical teams in five Kenyan counties to improve water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). Over the past five years, the project has helped to significantly increase access to functional latrines in the five counties it covers.

In Nakuru County, Efforts are focused on working with public health officials and communities to stamp out open defecation, practiced by only 3% of the community. This video presents some of the project’s work in the county.


World Bank – Scaling Up Rural Sanitation in Lao PDR: Latrines Makes Good Business

Published on Aug 22, 2016

A scaling up rural sanitation program in Champasak and Sekong provinces was the first government-led Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) and sanitation marketing pilot in Lao PDR. The program has stimulated considerable interest in, and support for, the approach within the National Center for Environmental Health and Water Supply (Nam Saat) of the Ministry of Health.

A short advocacy video, “Latrine Makes Good Business”, aims to encourage potential entrepreneurs to explore the sanitation business. It highlights a market opportunity for an aspirational and affordable sanitation product that provides customers with a one-stop service. The video briefly introduces sanitation marketing interventions that are being undertaken and collaboration with the public sector to facilitate connections between suppliers and consumers.


Who Delivers without Water? A Multi Country Analysis of Water and Sanitation in the Childbirth Environment

Who Delivers without Water? A Multi Country Analysis of Water and Sanitation in the Childbirth Environment. PLoS One, Aug 2016.

Authors: Giorgia Gon, María Clara Restrepo-Méndez, et. al.

Background and Objectives – Hygiene during childbirth is essential to the health of mothers and newborns, irrespective of where birth takes place. This paper investigates the status of water and sanitation in both the home and facility childbirth environments, and for whom and where this is a more significant problem.

Methods – We used three datasets: a global dataset, with information on the home environment from 58 countries, and two datasets for each of four countries in Eastern Africa: a healthcare facility dataset, and a dataset that incorporated information on facilities and the home environment to create a comprehensive description of birth environments in those countries. We constructed indices of improved water, and improved water and sanitation combined (WATSAN), for the home and healthcare facilities. The Joint Monitoring Program was used to construct indices for household; we tailored them to the facility context–household and facility indices include different components. We described what proportion of women delivered in an environment with improved WATSAN. For those women who delivered at home, we calculated what proportion had improved WATSAN by socio-economic status, education and rural-urban status.

Results – Among women delivering at home (58 countries), coverage of improved WATSAN by region varied from 9% to 53%. Fewer than 15% of women who delivered at home in Sub-Saharan Africa, had access to water and sanitation infrastructure (range 0.1% to 37%). This was worse among the poorest, the less educated and those living in rural areas. In Eastern Africa, where we looked at both the home and facility childbirth environment, a third of women delivered in an environment with improved water in Uganda and Rwanda; whereas, 18% of women in Kenya and 7% in Tanzania delivered with improved water and sanitation. Across the four countries, less than half of the facility deliveries had improved water, or improved water and sanitation in the childbirth environment.

Conclusions – Access to water and sanitation during childbirth is poor across low and middle-income countries. Even when women travel to health facilities for childbirth, they are not guaranteed access to basic WATSAN infrastructure. These indicators should be measured routinely in order to inform improvements.



The Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA) at the World Water Week 2016 in Stockholm

The World Water Week 2016 in Stockholm is lying ahead and the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA) will be Co-Convener of several exciting events related to WASH and Sustainable Sanitation. Moreover, the 22nd SuSanA Meeting (27th of August) as well as several SuSanA Working Group Meetings will take place during the SWWW. Make sure to take a look at the official SWWW SuSanA Flyer (link below) to find out more about the event topics and their schedule.

Apart from the events themselves the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance will be hosting an official SuSanA Booth (Booth No. 44) where you can have interesting conversations on the topic or simply read through some of the latest SuSanA publications.

For all people that are interested but not able to join the SWWW there will be a Live Stream of the SuSanA events as well as live Twitter updates using the hashtag #22susana

If you want to register for the SuSanA events at the SWWW you can find the registration link as well as more information here:

Lastly, if you have any questions or comments you can post them on the SuSanA Forum (after registration):



The Role of Network Science in Analyzing Slums in Rapidly Growing Urban Areas

The Role of Network Science in Analyzing Slums in Rapidly Growing Urban Areas | Source: ETH Zurich, Aug 19 2016 |

As Amy Krakowka Richmond and her colleagues see it, military forces operating in nonlinear urban and urban-fringe environments will increasingly have to deal with volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) settings. So, what can these forces do to analyze and anticipate these contexts effectively? Use the latest insights from network theory, argue the authors.

An excerpt: Using Water Resources to Explain Informal Governance Structure

As water is critical for health and wellness of any community, its distribution is absolutely central for maintaining peace and coordination of a region. Urban and peri-urban communities of developing societies offer insights about how both formal government and informal power hierarchy can determine access and control of limited resources. We illustrate the utility of network models by exploring network maps of water availability in urban and peri-urban regions in the developing world. Historically, tension has been fueled when disparate social classes with numerous ethnic affiliations from distinct regions of a state are brought into close proximity and forced to rely on restricted resources. In many cases, political and other influential entities can act as informal gatekeepers, whose role can either aggravate or alleviate such tensions. The complexity of the problem is only made worse by the lack of centralized oversight of the various natural resources, such as water, food, and energy, as well as the physical land upon which these resources are drawn. We suggest that this problem be examined from a systems perspective, by mapping, quantifying and evaluating how well various interdependent systems related to water supply are maintained and balanced. In the figure above we show the various networks that are likely involved in the access and consumption of water.

The water access and consumption network isolates where and how the resources directly impact the population. This network is bi-modal as it is made up two types of nodes: water consumers and water sources. The links indicate which households get water from which source(s). Water is consumed primarily by three sectors: agriculture, households and commercial operations. This network directly reflects constraints to water access—­­how far and how many sources can households access. Households can obtain water from multiple sources. In sub-Saharan Africa for example, a significant portion of the population lacks access to piped water and therefore households rely primarily on springs, communal taps, and open water sources such as lakes and rivers. Analysis of this network can show how water consumption relies on particular types of sources and which suppliers in turn wield the most economic and possibly social and political influence.

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