In one in seven countries, access to basic sanitation is decreasing. Even in cities, where access to safely managed sanitation is more prevalent than in rural areas, gaps between the rich and the poor continue to be stark.
But what does this look like at a city level?
This Discussion Paper provides examples of how a systems approach can be applied at a city level by looking at two cities – Lusaka, Zambia and Maputo, Mozambique – that have experienced positive change in their on-site sanitation sector over the last decade.
Each case study contains an in-depth examination of one particular component of the system that was identified by stakeholders as being particularly crucial: a community-based, utility-managed faecal sludge management (FSM) service in Lusaka, and the design of a sanitation tariff in Maputo.
The report identifies four components crucial to bringing change for all urban residents:
- Begin by optimising one part of the system, to overcome institutional inertia and secure buy-in for wider change
- Embrace the power of process, recognising that simply bringing people together to discuss challenges can help to move change forward
- Design investments to address genuine system constraints, rather than purely directing investment towards more tangible infrastructure projects
- Anticipate and factor in delays, due to the likelihood of unexpected political, economic or capacity constraints slowing down progress