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Talking toilets: evaluating software and hardware oriented rural sanitation approaches in northern India

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conference contribution
posted on 12.02.2018, 15:10 authored by Brian Bell, Vinod K. Mishra
This paper presents a 2011 study of India’s Total Sanitation Campaign (TSC). Qualitative methods were used to study six villages in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. The research aimed to determine how implementations and outcomes compare in Community-led Total Sanitation (software-oriented) and conventional (hardware-oriented) TSC approaches. Despite a national guideline that called for a demand-driven, community-led, incentive-based TSC, in reality most interventions were supply-led, infrastructure-centric, and subsidy-based. CLTS interventions were more awareness-focused, involving longer-term interaction with households. In conventional TSC interventions, excessive focus on construction and subsidies drove supply-led tendencies, neglect of software and participation, and exclusion of non-poor and lower-caste households. CLTS villages tended to achieve more sustequitable (sustainable and equitable) access and usage than conventional villages. Levels of local government capacity and village leadership quality were key to intervention success.



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

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  • Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC)

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BELL, B. and MISHRA, V.K., 2013. Talking toilets: evaluating software and hardware oriented rural sanitation approaches in northern India. IN: Shaw, R.J. (ed). Delivering water, sanitation and hygiene services in an uncertain environment: Proceedings of the 36th WEDC International Conference, Nakuru, Kenya, 1-5 July 2013, 6pp.


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