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Analysis enables forecasting of water access, longevity of sources and investment priorities.

Fixing a hand pump in Fort Portal, Karambole District, Uganda

Analytics software company Applied Predictive Technologies (APT) and the Global Water Challenge (GWC) recently partnered to carry out an evaluation of one of the world's largest publicly available monitoring data sets – the extensive Water Point Data Exchange (WPDx) library. Covering nearly 400,000 water sources - such as wells or pumps - in more than 30 countries around the world, the WPDx data library is entirely free and open to the public. The evaluation focused on several countries, including Sierra Leone, Swaziland, Uganda, and Liberia and netted several actionable findings.

The goal was to create data-driven recommendations and tools to improve water access in developing countries. APT’s analytical experts utilised their suite of software and processes to examine patterns in water availability. Characteristics analysed included countries’ investments, policies, demographics, and climate as well as water source type, age, and service area (among others).

Key analyses and results include: 

  1. Drivers of Clean Water Access: Examining more than one hundred different traits (such as population, demographics, employment, sanitation policies, and the average age of water sources), APT was able to create a reliable forecasting metric for water access at a national level.
  2. Predictive Modelling on Water Access: Exploration into water point age, repair-service area, demographics, and other traits enabled APT to create a forecast model on the longevity of individual water sources. These findings can allow governments to make data-driven decisions on how they plan their budgets for operations and maintenance, as well as how to more effectively invest monitoring resources. 
  3. Prioritising Water Investments: By mapping population data over water point data, APT created an algorithm focused on delivering clean water to the greatest number of currently unserved people at the lowest possible cost. This algorithm provides governments and others with the tools needed to prioritise their investments, both for rehabilitating water points and building new water sources.

WPDx will be hosting a series of webinars for government, sector practitioners, and the public over the coming months. Additionally, WPDx will be sharing blog posts on several key recommendations, decision frameworks, and tools based on the results of the APT evaluation. 

For more information, please see the full press release – ‘Applied Predictive Technologies Helps Global Water Challenge Improve Access to Clean Water Through Analytics’ also available on the Predictive Technologies website.