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Sustainability 2018, 10(11), 4052; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10114052

Transition Management for Improving the Sustainability of WASH Services in Informal Settlements in Sub-Saharan Africa—An Exploration

1
DRIFT (Dutch Research Institute for Transitions), Erasmus University Rotterdam, P.O. Box 1738, 3000DR Rotterdam, The Netherlands
2
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology, Makerere University, P.O. Box 7062 Kampala, Uganda
3
Department of Civil Engineering, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, Ghana
4
WISE—Futures: Centre for Water Infrastructure and Sustainable Energy Futures, Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology, 23311 Nelson Mandela Road, Arusha, Tanzania
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 August 2018 / Revised: 10 October 2018 / Accepted: 16 October 2018 / Published: 5 November 2018
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Abstract

This paper explores how transition management processes can be designed to address the unsustainability of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services in informal settlements in cities in Sub-Saharan Africa. The unsustainability of services related to WASH in informal settlements in Sub-Saharan Africa is deeply embedded in current societal and governance structures, cultures, and practices; it is context-dependent and involves numerous actors with different interests. Based on a literature review and empirical work in Arusha (Tanzania), Dodowa (Ghana), and Kampala (Uganda), we identify five context dimensions that account for the unsustainability of WASH services: (a) multiplicity of WASH practices, structures, and arrangements; (b) governance capacities for WASH services and maintenance; (c) landownership for sustainable access to WASH; (d) public participation in decision-making related to WASH; and (e) socio-economic inequalities governing access to WASH. These dimensions pose numerous conceptual and application challenges for transition management. Based on these challenges, recommendations are formulated for the design of a contextualized, participatory transition management process that is not only functional, but also emancipatory. View Full-Text
Keywords: Sub-Saharan Africa; transition management; WASH; informal settlements; sustainability transitions Sub-Saharan Africa; transition management; WASH; informal settlements; sustainability transitions
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Silvestri, G.; Wittmayer, J.M.; Schipper, K.; Kulabako, R.; Oduro-Kwarteng, S.; Nyenje, P.; Komakech, H.; Van Raak, R. Transition Management for Improving the Sustainability of WASH Services in Informal Settlements in Sub-Saharan Africa—An Exploration. Sustainability 2018, 10, 4052.

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