Journal Article

H2Open Journal 5 (1)

Galvanising and Fostering Sub-National Government Leadership for Area-Wide Sanitation Programming

Published on 1 January 2022

Government leadership at both the national and sub-national levels is an essential step towards ensuring safely managed sanitation services for all.

Though the importance of sub-national government leadership for water, sanitation and hygiene is widely acknowledged, to date much of the focus has been on the delivery of water services.

This article sets out to start to address this imbalance by focusing on practical ways to galvanise and foster sub-national government leadership for sanitation programming. By focusing on the experiences across three sub-national areas in East Africa (in Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya) where positive changes in the prioritisation of sanitation by local governments have been witnessed, we (a group of researchers, local government representatives and development partner staff) cross-examine and identify lessons learnt.

The results presented in this paper and subsequent discussion provide practical recommendations for those wishing to trigger a change in political will at the local level and create the foundation to strengthen sanitation governance and the wider system needed to ensure service delivery for all.

Cite this publication

Mimi Coultas, Mable Mideva Chanza, Ruhil Iyer, Lambert Karangwa, Jimmy Eric Kariuki, Hodaka Kosugi, Talia Timani Meeuwissen, Emmah Mwende, Jamie Myers, Philip Son, David Katwere Ssemwanga; Galvanising and fostering sub-national government leadership for area-wide sanitation programming. H2Open Journal 1 January 2022; 5 (1): 1–10. doi:


Mimi Coultas

Research Officer

Ruhil Iyer

Research Officer

Jamie Myers

Research and Learning Manager


Supported by

Publication details

published by
IWA Publishing
H2Open Journal, volume 5, issue 1


About this publication

Programmes and centres
The Sanitation Learning Hub

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