Published in: 2012
Stockholm Environment Institute, Sweden and BPD Water & Sanitation, UK
It does seem that the term sanitation as a business is gaining some momentum. Perhaps sanitation is not yet sexy, but it is certainly gaining more attention than it did a few years ago.
This paper tries, by looking more closely at one specific sanitation market, to tease out some of the broader trends affecting the sanitation sector and, in particular, unsewered sanitation. It looks at how this market is structured, where value exists and how this is monetised and suggests how this market is evolving. It also looks at how outsiders are looking to support the development and professionalization of the market.
This paper also addresses some broader trends that shape markets in unsewered sanitation. While a dramatic change in approach in developing countries is highly unlikely, even a marginal shift towards alternatives to centralised sewer systems could have significant ramifications for developing countries. In Africa at least, few countries have succeeded in putting in place sewerage networks of any great scale. Many inherited their networks at independence and these have not always been well maintained (never mind kept pace with rapid urbanisation). Yet attention to other forms of waste management has been minimal; mostly those ‘without’ have been left to fend for themselves. Research and development into alternatives has been minimal and when it comes to technical choices, engineering approaches and norms and standards, professionals in the sector have generally taken their lead from developed countries.
Schaub-Jones, D. (2012). Sanitation as a business - Trends Shaping the Market for Urban Sanitation, a discussion paper. Stockholm Environment Institute, Sweden and BPD Water & Sanitation, UK
English Faecal sludge treatment processes Market development (WG2) Peri-urban Sub-Saharan Africa
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