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TitleCommunity-managed water supplies in Africa: sustainable or dispensable?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsHarvey, PA, Reed, RA
Paginationp. 365 - 378 : 1 fig.
Date Published2007-07-01
Keywordscommunity management, community participation, house connections, institutional aspects, private sector, rural areas, sdiafr, sdipar, sub-saharan africa, sustainability, water supply

Over the past two decades, community management has become the prevalent model for management of rural water supplies throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Despite its widespread popularity among donors and implementing agencies, low water supply sustainability levels throughout the sub-continent indicate that it is not the panacea it is often presented to be. There is a strong need to distinguish between ‘community participation’ which is a prerequisite for sustainability and ‘community management’ which is not. If community management systems are to be sustainable, they require ongoing support from an overseeing institution to provide encouragement and motivation, monitoring, participatory planning, capacity building, and specialist technical assistance. If such support is not available, alternatives such as household water supplies and private sector service delivery should be considered. (Authors' abstract)

Notes33 ref.
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