The Sustainable WASH Systems (SWS) learning partnership is a collaborative activity funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to develop, test, and document high-potential “systems approaches” for local water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) service delivery. The five year project (2016-2021) in Cambodia, Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda aims to provide concrete improvements to service delivery while placing a significant emphasis on building knowledge and providing evidence to USAID and the global WASH sector on how systems approaches can be applied, adapted, and scaled in different contexts.
Below are some of the most recent SWS publications:
Valcourt, N., Walters, J., Javernick-Will, A., Linden, K., and Hailegiorgis, B., 2020. Understanding rural water services as a complex system : an assessment of key factors as potential leverage points for improved service sustainability. Sustainability, 12(3), pp.1-17 : 3 fig., 3 tab.
Results from stakeholders workshops in Ethiopia and Uganda indicate that a more intentional focus on factor interactions in WASH systems could lead to more effective strategies for improving service sustainability. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/understanding-rural-water-services-complex-system-assessment-key-factors-potential
Hope, R., Thomson, P., Koehler, J. & Foster, T., 2020. Rethinking the economics of rural water in Africa. Oxford review of economic policy, 36(1), pp.171- 190 : 2 fig.
Why is rural water is different for communities, schools, and healthcare facilities across characteristics of scale, institutions, demand, and finance? Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/rethinking-economics-rural-water-africa
Hollander, D., Ajroud, B., Thomas, E., Peabody, S., Jordan, E., Javernick-Will, A. & Linden, K., 2020. Monitoring methods for systems-strengthening activities toward sustainable water and sanitation services in low-income settings. Sustainability, 12(17), pp.1-16 : 10 fig.
Early findings from the application of outcome mapping and system-wide assessments within the USAID-funded Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership (SWS) indicate the importance of including both within an overall monitoring approach to support systems strengthening of water and sanitation services. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/monitoring-methods-systems-strengthening-activities-toward-sustainable-water-and
University of Colorado Boulder. Environmental Incentives, 2020. Defining collective action approaches in WASH. (Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. Research brief). Washington, DC, USA: USAID Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. 4 p. : 1 tab.
This research brief presents a definition of collective action approaches and a working typology of the range of related approaches. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/defining-collective-action-approaches-wash
Harper, D., 2020. Using social network analysis in WASH programs. (Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. Learning brief). Washington, DC, USA: USAID Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. 5 p. : 2 tab.
This learning brief summarizes the application and use of social network analysis (SNA) in the Sustainable WASH Systems (SWS) Learning Partnership in Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, and Cambodia. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/using-social-network-analysis-wash-programs
Pugel, K., Javernick-Will, A., Koschmann, M., Peabody, S. & Linden, K., 2020. Adapting collaborative approaches for service provision to low-income countries : expert panel results. Sustainability, 12(7), pp.1-26 : 6 fig., 2 tab.
This study contributes to both literature and practice by identifying the relative importance of factors to consider when designing collaborative approaches in low-income countries with limited governance capabilities. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/adapting-collaborative-approaches-service-provision-low-income-countries-expert-panel
Chintalapati, P., 2020. Maintenance approaches to improve the sustainability of rural water supplies. (Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. Research brief). Washington, DC, USA: USAID Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. 7 p.
This document reviews literature about the factors influencing the sustainability of rural water services, and the emerging maintenance approaches seeking to address these factors and improve service reliability. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/maintenance-approaches-improve-sustainability-rural-water-supplies
Valcourt, N., Javernick-Will, A., Walters, J. & Linden, K., 2020. System approaches to water, sanitation, and hygiene : a systematic literature review. International journal of environmental research and public health, 17(3), pp.1-18 : 4 fig., 3 tab.
There is insufficient information in the literature to evaluate the utility and efficacy of systems approaches for improving WASH service sustainability. This article proposes recommendations for improving the evidence base. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/system-approaches-water-sanitation-and-hygiene-systematic-literature-review
McDermott, M., 2020. Ethiopia midterm organizational network analysis report. (Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. Research report). Washington, DC, USA: USAID Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. ii, 67 : 27 fig., 16 tab.
Measuring change over time in the relationships and network structure of learning alliances in four separate Ethiopian locations in USAID’s Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership (SWS). Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/ethiopia-midterm-organizational-network-analysis-report
Ajroud, B., Hollander, D. & Peabody, S., 2020. Measuring systems change in WASH programming : a practical application of two tools. (Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. Research report). Washington, DC, USA: USAID Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership. 31 p. : 6 boxes, 3 fig.
This report provides a guide to the practical application of outcome mapping and sustainability scorecards to monitor systems change in WASH programming. Read more: https://www.ircwash.org/resources/measuring-systems-change-wash-programming-practical-application-two-tools
For more on the Sustainable WASH Systems (SWS) learning partnership and a full list of publications go to: