Research: Sustainability & scalability


A persistent challenge in the water and sanitation sector is designing service improvements that are both sustainable, i.e., that continue to provide safe, reliable, affordable services over the long-term, and that can achieve impact at large scale quickly. Indeed, in many cases these two objectives can be in conflict. Our group is interested in operationalizing different conceptions of sustainability (e.g., financial, social, environmental), as well as investigating the linkages between user demand (preferences) and sustainability. 

Current projects

  • Using data from communities in Kenya, Senegal and Colombia, we are investigating the extent to which productive use of domestic water supplies in rural communities is associated with financial and technical sustainability of water systems. (World Bank Water & Sanitation Program funding)
  • We are investigating the drivers of community sense of ownership for water infrastructure and the contribution of sense of ownership to sustainable service delivery in several countries.