Unravelling the linkages between water, sanitation, hygiene and rural poverty: The WASH poverty index
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Many studies have reported the effect of water supply, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in improving health and ultimately alleviating poverty. Current coverage estimates show however that a large proportion of people in the world still do not have access to a simple pit latrine or a source of safe drinking water, and this situation worsens in rural areas. To help end these appalling figures, much effort has gone into the development of policy instruments which support decision-making, i.e. planning, targeting and prioritization. Indices and indicators are increasingly recognised as powerful tools for such purposes. This paper details the theoretical framework and development of a multidimensional, WASH-focused, thematic indicator: the WASH Poverty Index (WASH PI). It describes the methodology in index construction and disseminates achieved results in a variety of forms to promote the utility of the tool for the integrated analysis of WASH and poverty linkages. The article uses Kenya as initial case study to illustrate the application of the index. Overall, WASH PI helps identify priority areas and guide appropriate action and policy-making towards improved service delivery.
CitationGine, R.; Perez, A. Unravelling the linkages between water, sanitation, hygiene and rural poverty: The WASH poverty index. "Water resources management", 2013, vol. 27, núm. 5, p. 1501-1515.