Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

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  • DianeKellogg
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

To all who commented on this discussion thread last year:
Marijn and Dorothee did indeed write the paper they thought about as a result of this thread. They've posted their working paper as a new topic at this link:

forum.susana.org/component/kunena/167-ma...omments-wanted#18970

Reading their article renewed the topic for me, and their framing of the issues was helpful. They use a "Motivations" and "Challenges" structure for analyzing perspectives of all stakeholders. Hope you'll go to the other thread and comment on their paper. They've asked for input to help refine the thinking and analysis.

Diane
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  • Florian
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

ggalli wrote: For more on this topic, I would really recommend Rémi Kaupp's article on this new online magazine Broken Toilets: brokentoilets.org/article/good-shit-good-business/


Just got around now to read this article, really interesting piece looking into the different trends and fashions that marked sanitation in the past (this does of course not only happen in sanitation). As his conclusions are close to mine, emphasising the role of the public sector, I obviously like the article ;)

Also nice that he illustrates the piece with our sludge truck card deck (. We still have these btw., let me know if anyone wants some!)

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  • F H Mughal
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Amigo,

That is great! I see, you now access Dawn as well. This is quite a news for me!!

Big cheers!

Best regards,

F H Mughal
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Karachi, Pakistan

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  • Madhu
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

I am providing a link to my writings on the subject of sanitation and solutions relevant to communities in India. Some of it is based on my readings on SuSanA web site.My thoughts might have some relevance to the topic under discussion.

madhuthakar.blogspot.in/

I have also designed and developed a model household toilet based on DRDO bio digester technology and is being used by 3-5 persons daily since April 1, 2015 as proof of concept.I will be happy to share details if any one is interested.

Private sector must look at sanitation not only as a social sector philanthropy but also as a profit making business. The price point of US$ 200-800 per household for over a billion people is a huge business opportunity.Innovations in financing models need to be looked at for direct sales to end users.Partnerships with traders selling bicycles, scooters and motor cycles, TVs or tractor repair shops may help.
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  • campbelldb
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Thank you amigo for the comment! I included a link to your recent article in DAWN in an enewsletter that we send out very 2 weeks.

Best regards,
Dan
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  • F H Mughal
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Dear Mr. Dan,

Sanitation Updates, beyond doubt, is a major source of information on sanitation.

Cheers,

F H Mughal
F H Mughal (Mr.)
Karachi, Pakistan

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  • campbelldb
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Many thanks Giacomo for sharing the interesting article, I posted a link to it on Sanitation Updates.

Regards,
Dan
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  • dorothee.spuhler
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Dear Marijn

I like your idea of drafting the conclusion of this and other discussions in a overview schema on drivers and limitations for different actors to solve the "sanitation problem".
As a starting point we could start brainstorming those drivers and limitations for:
- households (low, middle, high-income) and communities
- governments (local, regional, national)
- private sector (small and medium sized (local/international, large national (local/international)
The schema could be used as a reference and to help oriente project and programme design in the future...?

Cheers, Dorothee
WG1 Co-lead
Developing methods and tools to support strategic planning for sustainable sanitation. Particular interested in novel technologies contributing to more inclusive and circular sanitation. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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  • ggalli
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

For more on this topic, I would really recommend Rémi Kaupp's article on this new online magazine Broken Toilets: brokentoilets.org/article/good-shit-good-business/
Giacomo Galli
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  • Nikita
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Excellent post Florian. I totally subscribe to your way of thinking. Private sector can only do so much in providing goods and services to improve access to sanitation. The rest is for government. For example in Southern Africa particularly in Malawi a lot of funding from international donors and financial institutions has been channelled towards the promotion and implementation of these innovative approaches for both products (technology) and services (marketing, management, etc). A lot of progress in acceleration of sanitation provision has been made through these interventions of cause. However, soon after the projects end, the progress diminishes and it's back to where we started from. Why? My thinking is that there is no proper strategy for exit and if an exit strategy exists, it is not feasible.
The new thinking that sanitation challenges can best be solved using locally developed solutions is a great innovation. What this means for the sanitation sector is that local communities (citizens and entrepreneurs) work together to develop their sanitation sector. This makes a lot of sense because it is a drive towards empowerment of local communities, development of innovations that are context specific, appropriate and therefore meet the needs of the community. Private sector involvement presents the opportunity to meet the financing gap and to ensure sustainable sanitation.
However, the golden rule for a meaningful and guaranteed involvement of private sector is "full cost recovery".
The challenge now is how to recover the full costs from the poor and more so from a state which has more than 50% of the population leaving in poverty? At this point, self provision by households and government subsidy fall off the equation and full cost recovery becomes not feasible. This has implications for the exit strategy? Someone has to take over the financing gap which has been left by the project funding to ensure sustainability.
To a certain extent, the externalities of poor sanitation provision are known and the greater proportion of the resultant health and welfare burden is borne by the poor. In view of that, governments and external funding agencies are justified to continue with these efforts even when they are aware that the solutions may not be sustainable.
In my opinion the solution lies in creating healthy economies and functional governments to ensure a better world for the poor but how the can that be achieved?
Nikita
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  • Marijn Zandee
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Dear Diane, and others,

The end users / population of a country is very important to include in any market overview.

I have been thinking about a schematic for sanitation markets for some time now, but have not found time to work it out in more detail. I am thinking of a triangle, with the corners being defined as: Population, Government and Private sector. I see the NGO sector as "mobile," they can dock to any of the other 3 players. It will depend on their size, working style, etc. who they decide to work with. For example, a large INGO may work with government agencies, or may subcontract to local NGOs who will work with the population. Alternatively, a smaller NGO may work with the private sector and the population in a small geographic area to improve toilet coverage.

I think a model like this, could help us identify what what key driver, or hindrances, are for each actor. For example, for the population, it will be something like aspirations (including cultural preferences)Versus ability to pay. The government could influence their aspirations in several ways -coercion through enforcing laws, or motivation through advertising.

I think working out a schema like this would help to identify where WASH interventions can make a difference.

Regards

Marijn
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  • DianeKellogg
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Re: Innovations and Private Sector: Can They Solve the Sanitation Problem?

Cecile, thank you for being so specific in siting the example about the individual sanitation taboo in Egypt. It gives me a heads up that I've got to factor in culture, and give more than a cursory education about its impact, for a Chapter on sanitation for novices.
Diane M. Kellogg
Partner, Kellogg Consultants
Private Sector Specialist, BMGF grant to SuSanA
Marketing Consultant, PRISTO (RVO-funded grant)

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