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Opportunities and challenges of community-based rural drinking water supplies: An analysis of water and sanitation committees in Ghana

Author

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  • Sun, Yan
  • Asante, Felix
  • Birner, Regina

Abstract

Providing safe drinking water in rural areas is a major challenge because it is not easy to establish institutional arrangements that will ensure that drinking water facilities are provided, maintained, and managed in an efficient, equitable, and sustainable way. Like many other countries, Ghana has adopted a community-based approach to meet this challenge. Community-based water and sanitation committees (WATSANs) are in charge of managing drinking water facilities at the local level. They are supported by water and sanitation teams of each district administration and by the Community Water and Sanitation Agency, an independent agency that has been created to facilitate the community-based approach. This paper is based on the analysis of two survey datasets of WATSANs and households in rural Ghana. The paper confirms some findings of the earlier literature on this topic. For example, communities that have a higher level of existing community groups are more likely to have functioning WATSANs, while ethnically diverse communities are less likely to have these organizations. The paper also indicates that WATSANs have a positive effect on the mobilization of payment for water services. Using empirical data on local leaders, the paper shows that leadership also matters for the provision of safe drinking water. In particular, the paper suggests that female leaders seem to be effective in this respect.

Suggested Citation

  • Sun, Yan & Asante, Felix & Birner, Regina, 2010. "Opportunities and challenges of community-based rural drinking water supplies: An analysis of water and sanitation committees in Ghana," IFPRI discussion papers 1026, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:ifprid:1026
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    File URL: http://www.ifpri.org/sites/default/files/publications/ifpridp01026.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kleemeier, Elizabeth, 2000. "The Impact of Participation on Sustainability: An Analysis of the Malawi Rural Piped Scheme Program," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(5), pages 929-944, May.
    2. Isham, Jonathan & Kahkonen, Satu, 2002. "Institutional Determinants of the Impact of Community-Based Water Services: Evidence from Sri Lanka and India," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 50(3), pages 667-691, April.
    3. Akramov, Kamiljon T. & Asante, Felix Ankomah, 2008. "Decentralization and local public services in Ghana: Do geography and ethnic diversity matter?," GSSP working papers 16, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    4. Raghabendra Chattopadhyay & Esther Duflo, 2004. "Women as Policy Makers: Evidence from a Randomized Policy Experiment in India," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(5), pages 1409-1443, September.
    5. John Newman & Menno Pradhan & Laura B. Rawlings & Geert Ridder & Ramiro Coa & Jose Luis Evia, 2002. "An Impact Evaluation of Education, Health, and Water Supply Investments by the Bolivian Social Investment Fund," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 16(2), pages 241-274, August.
    6. Frances Cleaver, 1999. "Paradoxes of participation: questioning participatory approaches to development," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(4), pages 597-612.
    7. Benjamin Apraku Gyampoh & Monica Idinoba & Steve Amisah, 2008. "Water Scarcity Under a Changing Climate in Ghana: Options for livelihoods adaptation," Development, Palgrave Macmillan;Society for International Deveopment, vol. 51(3), pages 415-417, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Barde, Julia Alexa, 2017. "What Determines Access to Piped Water in Rural Areas? Evidence from Small-Scale Supply Systems in Rural Brazil," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 88-110.

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