1st Edition

Toilet Adoption in Rural India Social Norms and Behavioural Changes

    224 Pages 31 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge India

    224 Pages 31 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge India

    This book examines sanitation and toilet access across rural India, focusing on psychological, socio-cultural, infrastructural, and normative barriers to the initiative of Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM). While sketching the evolution of sanitation policies in India, it assesses their impact on sanitation behaviour. It also studies the implications of variations in caste, religion, and geography on toilet usage across Indian states.

    By analysing data from various states and intensive micro-level studies of three states, i.e., rural Bihar, Gujarat, and Telangana, this volume:

    • Suggests that socio-cultural factors are as significant as economic factors in shaping sanitation behaviour
    • Argues that the concepts of cleanliness and pollution are often determined by the social-cultural context, rooted in historical events that have shaped traditional beliefs and ideas about space
    • Explores gendered perspectives on the usage of and access to toilets
    • Highlights the limited effectiveness of Information, Education, and Communication (IEC) programs in encouraging toilet adoption and emphasizes the need for information dissemination at the ground level
    • Gives recommendations for enhancing the adoption of toilets in rural India, including provision for more than one toilet per household, uninterrupted access to water, and behavioural change to combat open defecation

    This book will be useful to students studying sociology, psychology, social work, and development studies. It will also be an invaluable companion to NGOs, social workers and activists actively involved in water, sanitation, and hygiene. Moreover, this book holds immense value as a pivotal resource and point of reference for policymakers engaged in rural development with a specific focus on Sustainable Development Goals.

    1. Sanitation and Wellbeing 2. Sanitation Policies, Programmes and Actions 3. Current Scenario and Regional Variations 4. Survey of Three States 5. Toilet Construction and Behavioural Change 6. Household Characteristics and Sanitation 7. Public Action 8. Discussion and Policy Implications


    Saswata Narayan Biswas is Professor at the Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA), India.

    Indranil De is Professor at the Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA), India.

    Gyan Mudra is Professor and Chairperson at the School of Gender Studies, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Hyderabad, India.

    Deepa Gupta is a doctoral fellow at the Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA), India.