Delivering Reliable Water Services for 100 million People

Achieving universal water services by 2030 demands rethinking the way that services are funded at scale. A graveyard of failed rural water supply infrastructure highlights the need for increased operations and maintenance funding and transparent links between investments and results. We consider the challenge of sustaining reliable rural services for 100 million people. This paper considers the design of results-based funding contracts for rural service providers. These contracts would provide funding to service providers who deliver verified service outcomes representing social and economic returns. The funding issued would be non-repayable in cash terms, but provide social and economic returns from delivering services in rural and last-mile contexts.

Results-Based Contracts for Rural Water Services
Results-Based Contracts for Rural Water Services Infographic

Performance-based Funding for Reliable Rural Water Services in Africa


Webinar: Performance-based funding for rural water in Africa

Monday 13 May 2019, 2pm/UK - Zoom meeting

How might we fund reliable rural water services at scale to leave no one behind? In 2018, five service providers collectively maintained over 2800 rural waterpoints serving an estimated one million people in Burkina Faso, the Central African Republic, Kenya, and Uganda. This webinar reviews findings from a new report assessing their performance and discusses implications for funding reliable rural services to achieve SDG 6.1.

Listen to the recording here

Sustainable financing of reliable rural water services requires three conditions to be satisfied: 1) appropriate institutional arrangements; 2) effective maintenance contracts; and 3) robust operational data. Fulfilling these requirements and implementing robust revenue collection systems could deliver high-quality services with concessional funding targeted towards areas of greatest need. Our analysis shows that all three requirements are achievable but not ubiquitous. If policymakers and funders insist on fulfilling these requirements, leaving no-one behind could become a reality.

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About 'Uptime'

Uptime is a global consortium to deliver drinking water services to millions of rural people through long-term, performance-based funding to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6.1.

University of Oxford FundiFix Whave Uduma Vergnet Hydro Water for Good Water Mission