From Statistics to Specifics: Join the WASH Monitoring Exchange (WASHME)

Improve International

By Susan Davis, Executive Director, Improve International

One of the main themes at the upcoming 2012 Water and Health Conference at the University of North Carolina is Monitoring and Evaluation for Sustainability. This reflects the growing interest in water supply, sanitation and hygiene monitoring. We all know that significant challenges continue to plague the WASH sector, with system failure rates of 30-50%. For this reason, more and more implementing organizations want better data to understand the results of their work over time, and philanthropists hope to understand the long-term impact of their investments. While many nifty tools for monitoring have been introduced recently, barriers remain that prevent organizations from conducting ongoing post-construction monitoring. Organizations say costs, time, skills, and knowing what to monitor make it difficult. And underlying all of this may be a fear that making the nameless statistics on failure specific to our organizations will affect our…

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Coffee talk: Jonathan Wiles of Living Water International

Improve International

By Susan Davis, Executive Director, Improve International

[Full transparency: this conversation was over the telephone and the resulting blog was finished over email, but I was drinking coffee the whole time.] Jonathan Wiles is Vice President for Program Excellence at Living Water International. By training, he is an organizational strategist, communicator, and program developer. Jonathan has been involved in the WASH sector for more than a decade, during which he has been a researcher/practitioner in programs across three continents. Find him on Twitter @thirstforchange

Susan: You launched your new strategic plan in February 2011 – what were the key reasons for that plan, and how did it come together?

Jonathan: Living Water International was born in the early 90’s, when water development—this was before anyone was talking about “WASH”—was all about installing hardware. We all thought that a little village-level maintenance training was enough to ensure sustainability, and that…

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Why physical unique identifiers on water points will improve sustainable services

This blog is by Susan Davis, executive director of Improve International, an organization focused on promoting and facilitating independent evaluations of WASH programs to help the sector improve. She has more than 13 years of experience in international development and has evaluated WASH and other programs in 16 developing countries. Her first career (8 years in … Continue reading Why physical unique identifiers on water points will improve sustainable services