Phones and Agriculture – the way of the future?

“The U.S. Agency for International Development, through the U.S. Global Development Lab and the Bureau for Food Security, is working to demonstrate that digital tools and approaches can improve cost-effectiveness and better development outcomes in food security and nutrition programs. As part of this effort, USAID is launching a case study series to highlight different approaches to digital tool adoption and how these tools are impacting organizational culture, operations and programming.”  Read article…

Re-thinking the Flush Toilet

“It’s time for humanity to rethink the traditional water-flush toilet. This is fairly obvious to anyone who has worked in the development sector and it’s becoming painfully obvious in places that have spent decades taking the flush toilet for granted.

In 2017, the UN reported that almost six in 10 people lack access to safely managed sanitation and that 80 percent of wastewater is being dumped untreated. While water rationing currently impacts places like California and the Eternal City, by 2025, 66 percent of the world’s population will be living under water scarcity. Rising sea levels and changing weather have caused increasing urban floodsthat lead to cholera outbreaks and bathe whole neighbourhoods in faecal coliforms, right here in England. But despite the universality of the problem, a double standard afflicts the sanitation world.”  Read the full Next Billion article

WASH and Gender

A new report from the World Bank, The Rising Tide: A New Look at Water and Gender “reviews a vast body of literature and offers a framework for visualizing water as an asset, a service, and a space. It shows how water is an arena where gender relations play out in ways that often mirror inequalities between the sexes. And it examines how norms and practices related to water often exacerbate ingrained gender and other hierarchies. Informal institutions, taboos, rituals, and norms all play a part in maintaining these hierarchies and can even reinforce gender inequality.” Read the report…

Insights into Open Defecation in India

Recent research offers insights into the impact of caste on open defecation, stunting, and high infant mortality rates in India. Concerns about pit emptying seem to be a the route of resistance to toilets – who will do the emptying? Traditionally a job of the Dalit caste, others don’t want to do it, and former Dalit caste members don’t either – they are looking forward. Read More…

Community Water Management

Clarissa Brocklehurst recently posted on the RWSN network the following:

At the Water Institute at the University of North Carolina, we decided to make community management the focus of our most recent WASH Policy Research Digest.  (more…)