Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 405607
Title Health, hygiene and appropriate sanitation: experiences and perceptions of the urban poor
Author(s) Joshi, D.; Fawcett, B.; Mannan, F.
Source Environment and Urbanization 23 (2011)1. - ISSN 0956-2478 - p. 91 - 111.
Department(s) Irrigation and Water Engineering
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2011
Abstract “Don’t teach us what is sanitation and hygiene.” This quote from Maqbul, a middle-aged male resident in Modher Bosti, a slum in Dhaka city, summed up the frustration of many people living in urban poverty to ongoing sanitation and hygiene programmes. In the light of their experiences, such programmes provide “inappropriate sanitation”, or demand personal investments in situations of highly insecure tenure, and/or teach “hygiene practices” that relate neither to local beliefs nor to the ground realities of a complex urban poverty. A three-year ethnographic study in Chittagong, Dhaka, Nairobi and Hyderabad illustrated that excreta disposal systems, packaged and delivered as low-cost “safe sanitation”, do not match the sanitation needs of a very diverse group of urban men, women and children. It is of little surprise that the delivered systems are neither appropriate nor used, and are not sustained beyond the life of the projects. This mismatch, far more than an assumed lack of user demand for sanitation, contributes to the elusiveness of the goal of sanitation and health for all. The analysis indicates that unless and until the technical, financial and ethical discrepancies relating to sanitation for the urban poor are resolved, there is little reason to celebrate the recent global declaration on the human right to water and sanitation and health for all
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