ADBI-Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Leadership Capacity Development on City-wide Inclusive Sanitation
ADBI and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) jointly conduct capacity building and training (CBT) and research on advancing sanitation delivery, non-sewered sanitation, and the sanitation value chain to make cities more liveable and promote inclusive urban development.
More than 1.5 billion people in developing Asian countries lack access to modern sanitation and around 80% of wastewater is discharged untreated. Evidence-based information and adequate leadership capacity is essential for national and local policy makers to develop and implement suitable sanitation infrastructure and programs in urban and rural areas. ADBI-BMGF CBT and research programs promote innovative and sustainable water and sanitation solutions in Asian Development Bank developing member countries (DMCs). These include case studies and policy briefs, events such as high-level policy dialogues, roundtables, seminars, and workshops, and field visits catering to DMC government officials, experts, and private sector professionals.
Tang, T., L. See, Y. Wada, N. Hosfstra, A. Patel, S. Setiawati, D. Wibowo, D. Rahut, and K. E. Seetha Ram, eds. 2022. Environment and Planning B: Urban Analytics and City Science 49(8).
The private sector can play a vital role in solving the sanitation challenge. The following four aspects highlight the importance of private sector participation in sanitation in developing countries, including in Asia.
Global climate change caused by human activities will continue to be catastrophic for humanity. In particular, climate change is having serious impacts on the world’s water systems (United Nations 2020), and changes in these systems can have an enormous impact on people’s lives.
An examination of the published journal articles on development economics reveals a striking pattern—very few are devoted to the analysis of sanitation interventions and development.
Over a billion people across Asia and the Pacific still lack access to basic sanitation services (JMP 2019). Most low- and middle-income countries in Central Asia, South Asia, and East Asia still do not have safely managed sanitation services.
All the sanitation improvement projects and investments over the years beg the question of whether we have seen a significant increase in school enrollment and gender parity in education or not.
The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has registered 959,116 deaths worldwide as of 21 September 2020. While the number is alarming, it is still not large compared with the 5.2 million children who died due to various causes in 2019, according to UNICEF.
Medical experts and institutions tell us that a critical but simple lifesaving action to reduce vulnerability to COVID-19 is literally in our own hands—regular handwashing with soap. Public awareness efforts underscore the need for greater behavioral compliance.
In both respects, sanitation is deeply embedded. Grids of sewer pipes have been fixed into the surface of cities in the developed world for more than a century, and it has become a strong and important part of most policy makers’ belief that this is how to provide sanitation.
National and local governments in Asia are facing significant challenges to effectively deliver access to sanitation, as well as to properly collect, transport, dispose of, and treat fecal sludge.
The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog) and, more importantly, the citizens of India have acknowledged that the country is undergoing the “worst water crisis” in its history—and they are making commendable efforts to address it.
Leh, a high-altitude cold desert in India, is a popular tourist destination hosting around 250,000 visitors annually. At present, the poorly designed septic tanks and soak pits installed by households, hotels, and guesthouses to contain fecal sludge are posing a serious threat to groundwater contamination.
The City Development Initiative for Asia, the Asian Development Bank, other multilateral agencies, and national governments are funding sewerage systems for medium and large cities throughout Asia.
In 2014, when I first moved to the Republic of Korea from India, I was impressed and awestruck by the country’s infrastructure and ease of mobility. Being an architect, the aspect I found most endearing of the city-wide master planning was the access and provision of toilets almost everywhere, be it at metro train stations, bus terminals, shopping plazas, parks, or even on mountain hikes.
Japan’s decentralized wastewater treatment system, known as “Johkasou,” has made affordable on-site sanitation facilities widely available and contributed to the country’s high sanitation standard.
An overview of ADBI and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s new three-year partnership agreement to support further enhancements in urban sanitation and human waste management in Asia and the Pacific.
Developing countries in Asia face great challenges in fecal sludge management (FSM). Yet, governments hesitate to invest in it because user charges are not enough to recover costs. This video shows the benefits of improving city-wide FSM in Dumaguete, Philippines.
Webinar to acquaint viewers with scalable solutions to implement Non-Sewered Sanitation and Fecal Sludge Management.
In this podcast, the University of Chicago’s Anjali Adukia presents her research on the link between school sanitation infrastructure, education growth, and development in India. Adukia describes the importance of latrine construction in schools for driving primary school enrollment, particularly among girls. She also discusses the policy implications of these dynamics for education and sanitation development, investment in school infrastructure, and gender equality.
The novel coronavirus continues to test health systems and economies worldwide. In this podcast, ADBI’s KE Seetha Ram discusses barriers to a simple life saving action to reduce exposure to COVID-19 – handwashing – and how efforts to further strengthen sanitation management can help communities in developing Asia and the Pacific thrive again.
Providing total and improved sanitation services is a challenge across Asia, as population growth—up 5.7% on average in the past two decades—overwhelms existing infrastructure and outpaces planning.