Key documents for the sub-category on capacity development

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Key documents for the sub-category on capacity development

For more information about why I am creating this new thread, please see here:


This thread is a "sticky thread" which means it will always remain at the top of this sub-category. It contains a recommendation for new people regarding the most important five documents in the thematic area of "capacity development".

The selection of documents is based on inputs from Dorothee Spuhler and other members of the SuSanA Working Group 1 (see also this thread here: ). We are open to feedback if others think that other documents should be selected here.

Recommended top five documents in the thematic area of "capacity development", in reverse chronological order:

Cranston, P. (2014). Knowledge Management and Building Demand for Sanitation. Final report from a consultancy assignment for Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program, Euforic Services, Oxford, UK

This document is the final report from a consultancy assignment focusing on Knowledge Management (KM) in the Building Demand for Sanitation (BDS) portfolio of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program. The document describes for example the approach to KM, the background and context for the consultancy assignment, and the KM options that have been developed through synthesis of these various inputs.

IWA (2014). An Avoidable Crisis - WASH Human Resource Capacity Gaps in 15 Developing Economies. International Water Association, London, UK

In this report, the first of its kind, the IWA provides an overarching recommendation for the development of national capacity development strategies that have high-level political buy-in with involvement from multiple actors to ensure sustained, adequate professional and technical capacity. The report also calls for concerted action at regional and global level to collect relevant human resources data, and perform further research to strengthen the evidence base on which action plans and strategies can be built.

GTO (2014). WASH Capacity Development - WASH ePaper, Issue No. 1. German Toilet Organization in collaboration with the German WASH Network and the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance, Germany

The first issue of the WASH e-paper examines the topic of WASH capacity development and provides a comprehensive overview of the latest basic and advanced training measures at both the national and international level. It also covers relevant WASH online platforms, blogs, newsletters, massive open online courses (MOOCs) and webinars.

Spuhler, D., McCreary, C., Fogde, M., Jenssen, P. D. (2012). Capacity development for sustainable sanitation - Factsheet of Working Group 1. Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA)

This factsheet provides an overview on basic principles of capacity development and addresses current challenges and gaps in capacity development for sustainable sanitation, as well as possible strategies and instruments to address those. Furthermore it contains a list of examples and contact details of capacity development initiatives from the sector.

UNDP (2011). UNDP Practitioner’s Guide - Capacity Development for Environmental Sustainability. United Nations Development Programme, New York, USA

The purpose of this Practitioner’s Guide is to provide practical guidance to UNDP staff, partner countries and other development partners on the nature of environmental capacity and how to support capacity development for environmental sustainability (CDES). The guide builds on UNDP’s Practice Note on Capacity Development and Practice Note on Capacity Assessment and incorporates best practices from CDES experience to date.

You can find further important documents dealing with this topic here: The following links are not so much about the theory of capacity development but are compilations of resources for doing capacity development at various levels (note this is just a selecttion, there are many more): Wikipedia articles (these are not specific to WASH but one should actually add links to the WASH article on Wikipedia): Please provide your feedback. What do you think of this selection? We can update it from time to time.


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  • depinder
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  • Depinder Kapur
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Re: Key documents for the sub-category on capacity development

Kindly add to your preferred 5 list, some material from South Asia. Please make it visible up front.

The most recent Capacity Needs Assessment Report prepared by National Institute of Urban Affairs is enclosed. It has not only the findings but also the research templates.

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