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Institutional Arrangements
A guide to strengthening the enabling environment for faecal sludge management

A guide to strengthening the enabling environment for faecal sludge management

Year of publication:
This Guide presents an introduction to conceptualising and strengthening the enabling environment for faecal sludge management (FSM) services in low-income urban areas. It is based on WSUP’s experience working with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop market-based solutions for on-site sanitation services in the cities of Dhaka and Chittagong (Bangladesh), Kisumu (Kenya) and Lusaka (Zambia).

Building block(s)
Institutional Arrangements
Organization responsible for the tool
WSUP - Water & Sanitation for the Urban Poor
Detailed description of Tool

FSM is the process by which faecal sludge is contained, collected, transported, treated and then safely disposed of or reused. According to this publication, 2.7 billion (38%) people around the world are dependent on on-site sanitation facilities like pit latrines and septic tanks, which contain and partially treat faecal sludge on-site (as opposed to centralised systems like sewers that remove waste from households and transport it to treatment facilities). In light of the vast numbers of people who depend on on-site sanitation, there is no serious prospect of achieving Sustainable Development Goal 6 without the development of reliable, safe FSM systems covering the full sanitation chain.

The market for on-site sanitation products and services will only thrive if it is supported by strong financial and institutional frameworks, complete with clear policies, regulations, technical assistance and political buy-in.

The guide provides insights into seven components for the enabling environment:

  • Institutional mandates
  • Regulatory effectiveness
  • Service provider capacity
  • Private sector enablement
  • Infrastructure and technology
  • Affordability and consumer willingness to pay
  • Consumer behaviour


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