World Bank Publication: Safely managed sanitation in high density rural areas, turning faecal sludge into a resource


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  • mtran
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World Bank Publication

Hello SuSanA community! Last week, the World Bank published a report on FSM in high density, rural areas. It is definitely worth a read but I have made a 2-page summary for those interested!
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  • Elisabeth
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Re: World Bank Publication: Safely managed sanitation in high density rural areas, turning faecal sludge into a resource

Dear Michelle,

Thank you for alerting us to this new publication by World Bank and for sharing your own personal summary! This is very good of you.
(direct link to the World Bank publication: )

I've learnt something here today, because for me "rural" equalled "low density" automatically but the report explains that (on page 5):

High-Density Rural Areas
Although the terms rural and urban are often used as a dichotomy, in reality there is a
continuum—as illustrated by table 2.1, which explains the areas covered in this study.
High-density rural areas tend to fall between small towns and rural villages on the rural-urban spectrum. They would typically be classified as “intermediate” or “predominantly rural” areas by the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development
(OECD), depending on factors such as the regional density of population and proximity to
a town. High-density rural areas are typical in areas such as the Indo-Gangetic Plain; the
Mekong Delta; the Nile Valley and Delta; Western China; parts of Indonesia, the Philippines,
and Thailand; and parts of West Africa (notably around Kano Nigeria and some coastal


Rural administrations typically lack the mandate and institutional capacity to provide
FSM services or to manage procurement, design contracts, enforce regulations, and monitor
performance. Households are largely left to their own devices and have little appreciation of
the costs and activities required to manage their on-site systems (chapter 11). When households
are already bearing costs themselves, the municipality has little economic incentive to
assume responsibility.

It's good that the report looks into reuse in agriculture, see for example on page 72 about limitations:

Regulatory and policy frameworks that
do not allow any use of wastewater in
agriculture limit the growth of these
informal enterprises. They may force a
widespread practice to remain under the
regulatory radar and informal, which
reinforces the risks of limited awareness
and poor practices. The informal character
of the enterprises hampers scaling up and
technical innovation.

By the way, SuSanA is mentioned six times in the report: twice for a photo credit and four times for a publication in the SuSanA library.

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant located in Ulm, Germany
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Twitter: @EvMuench
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