Sustainable Water and Sanitation Services: The Life-Cycle Cost Approach to Planning and Management, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Sustainable Water and Sanitation Services

The Life-Cycle Cost Approach to Planning and Management, 1st Edition

By Livelihoods & Natural Resource Managment Institute, International Water & Sanitation Centre, Centre for Economic and Social Studies, Watershed Support Services & Activities Network


330 pages | 20 Color Illus. | 150 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2013-12-24
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Based on the work of the WASHCost project run by the IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre (IRC), this book provides an evaluation of the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sectors in the context of developing countries and is the first systematic study of applying the life-cycle cost approach to assessing allocations. It presents unit cost estimates of the WASH sector across geographic locations and technologies, including rural and peri-urban areas, and these are compared with service levels. It analyses detailed data from more than 5000 households across nine agro-climatic zones in Andhra Pradesh State in India. Key issues assessed include poverty analysis of service levels, cost drivers and factors at the village and household level, and governance aspects such as transparency, accountability and value for money in relation to unit costs and service levels.

This is the most comprehensive study of the WASH sector in India and elsewhere that utilises the life-cycle cost approach, along with GIS, econometric modelling and qualitative research methods. Not only does it contribute to research and methodology in this area, but the analysis also provides valuable insights for planners, policy makers and bi-lateral donors. The authors show how the methodology can also be applied in other developing country contexts.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

V. Ratna Reddy, Catarina Fonseca and Charles Batchelor

2. WASH Sector in India: The Policy Context

V. Kurian Baby and V. Ratna Reddy

3. Life-Cycle Cost Approach: An Analytical Framework for WASH Sector

V. Ratna Reddy, Catarina Fonseca and Charles Batchelor

4. Unit Costs and Service Levels: Region and Technology-wise

V. Ratna Reddy, M. Venkataswamy and M. Snehalatha

5. Explaining Inter-Village Variations in Drinking Water Provision: Factors Influencing Costs and Service Levels in Rural Andhra Pradesh

V. Ratna Reddy

6. Rural Sanitation and Hygiene: Economic and Institutional Aspects of Sustainable Services

V. Ratna Reddy

7. Nirmal Gram Puraskar and Sanitation Service Levels: Curse of Slippage

M. Snehalatha, V. Anitha Raj, P. Bhushan and M. Venkataswamy

8. Cost of Provision and Managing WASH Services in Peri-Urban Areas

G. Alivelu, V. Ratna Reddy, P. Bhushan and V. Anitha Raj

9. Skewed and Inequitable Access to Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Services

M.Snehalatha and James Batchelor

10. How can Water Security be Improved in Water Scarce Areas of Rural India?

Charles Batchelor, James Batchelor and M. Snehalatha

11. Assessing Progress towards Sustainable Service Delivery in India: Lessons for Rural Water Supply

A.J. James

12. Transparency, Accountability and Participation (TAP): Understanding Governance in Rural WASH Sector

M.V. Rama Chandrudu. Safa Fanaian and R. Subramanyam Naidu

13. Decentralized Governance and Sustainable Service Delivery: A Case of Nenmeni Rural Water Supply Scheme, Kerala, India

P.K. Kurian, V. Kurian Baby and Terry Thomas

14. Provision of Sustainable WASH Services: Policy Options and Imperatives

V. Ratna Reddy, Catarina Fonseca and Charles Batchelor

About the Authors

Livelihoods and Natural Resources Management Institute (LNRMI) is an independent institution based in Hyderabad, India, aiming at conducting high quality research and consultancy in the area of human livelihoods and natural resource management.

IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre (IRC), The Hague, Netherlands, seeks to bridge the knowledge gap through joint learning with partners for improved, low-cost water supply, sanitation and hygiene in developing couries.

The Centre for Economic and Social Studies (CESS), Hyderabad, India conducts interdisciplinary research in analytical and applied areas of social sciences, encompassing socio-economic and other aspects of development.

Watershed Support Services and Activities Network (WASSAN) in Secunderabad, India works towards bringing about a qualitative change in the watershed based development programs in India.

About the Series

Earthscan Studies in Water Resource Management

Earthscan Studies in Water Resource Management
This series includes a wide range of inter-disciplinary approaches to water resource management, integrating perspectives from both social and natural sciences. It includes research monographs and titles aimed at professionals, NGOs and policy-makers. Authors or editors of potential new titles should contact Hannah Ferguson, Editor (

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Development / Sustainable Development
MEDICAL / Public Health
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Disease & Health Issues
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Environmental / Waste Management
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Environmental / Water Supply