Achieving water security remains an elusive goal across large swathes of sub-Saharan Africa, yet the benefits of investing in water, sanitation and hygiene are clear. Households benefit through a range of health, educational, nutritional and broader livelihood impacts; local, regional, and national economies benefit from greater economic activity, spending, and investment; and over the longer term, households and economies benefit through greater resilience to climate change and shocks. So why are governments and their development partners struggling to meet water and sanitation targets? What factors make it difficult to sustain services at scale? And how can policies and plans for delivering and sustaining services for poor people be strengthened in the face of multiple pressures, including climate change?
This book, the outcome of a five-year research programme in Ethiopia, addresses these questions head-on. Based on extensive field research and in-depth interviews, Achieving Water Security draws conclusions for policy and practice of relevance not just for Ethiopia, but for sub-Saharan Africa more widely.