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TitleEvaluating the political economy for pro-poor sanitation investments
Publication TypeMiscellaneous
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsPerez, E
Secondary TitleResearch Brief / WSP
Pagination8 p.; 2 fig.; 2 boxes
Date Published2011-06-01
PublisherWater and Sanitation Program, WSP
Place PublishedWashington, DC, USA
Keywordsaccess to sanitation, infrastructure, investment, sanitation, sanitation services

There is ongoing concern that governments at many levels are not devoting enough attention and resources to sanitation services, particularly when compared to spending on water supply and other infrastructure services. Additionally, existing sanitation investments and service provision are not often pro-poor. Efforts to increase access to sanitation infrastructure often benefit better-off urban residents at the expense of the urban poor, slum dwellers, or rural populations. However, even within the context of competing demands and limited resources, there is increasing awareness that government decisions regarding sanitation expenditures are determined largely by political, rather than technical or economic constraints. Understanding and working with the political economy of sanitation of a country is necessary for increasing investments and reaching the rural and urban poor. Assessing stake holder interests, identifying potential winners and losers, identifying incentives, and examining formal and informal institutions provides a better understanding of the risks and opportunities associated with institutions and stakehol der interests in the sanitation sector. This knowledge can be used to better support more pro-poor sanitation investment. [authors abstract]

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