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Promoting efficient and equitable urban WASH services

Published on: 26/10/2020

Performance monitoring and innovative technological and financial solutions help. Report of a webinar.

 

As part of its series on Innovations and Empowerment for Sustainable WATSAN Solutions, the WHEELS India Niswarth (WIN) Foundation co-organised a webinar on "Efficient and equitable service delivery for urban water supply and sanitation" on 17 September 2020. IRC Board member Prof Dr Meera Mehta and her colleague Jaladhi Vavaliya gave a presentation on the Performance Assessment System (PAS), which is being used by 1000+ cities in India. PAS was developed by CWAS, the Center for Water and Sanitation at CRDF, CEPT University, of which Dr Mehta is executive co-director. CWAS Senior Program Lead Ms Vavaliya said the data analysis of 900 Indian cities suggest that "over time equity has improved but level of service and efficiency has not seen much improvements".

PAS-SLB + Framework

Courtesy: CWAS, the Center for Water and Sanitation at CRDF, CEPT University

Panellists shared country and international experiences on urban water and sanitation service (WASH) delivery. Jay Bhagwan, Executive Director of the Water Research Commission talked about South Africa's rights-based policy for free basic water services and IRC's Ruchika Shiva discussed her experience supporting Odisha's Drink from Tap Mission. At the international level, Helena Alegre, National Laboratory for Civil Engineering (LNEC), reflected on her experience in pioneering the International Water Association's performance indicator system. Panellist Alejandro JimĂ©nez, SIWI's Director, Water and Sanitation, elaborated on international responses to the COVID-19 epidemic.

Moderator Prof Dr Dinesh Mehta, Executive Co-Director of CWAS, then asked panellists to reflect on the issue of equity in urban WASH. This was followed by a question and answer session on the topics of using performance assessments to improve services, cost effectiveness, and community participation.

These were the two main takeaways from the webinar:

  • To provide effective and equitable service provision, regular performance monitoring is required to identify the gaps and resolve the issues faced by consumers and service providers
  • Good governance, integrated resource management, adopting innovative technologies and effective financial planning can make the WASH services accessible to all

View below the video recording of the webinar. A summary of the webinar is available under Downloads.