Journal Article

IDS Bulletin Vol. 43 Nos. 2

Sanitation: What’s the Real Problem?

Published on 1 March 2012

The vast number of people without sanitation raises the question why this is so.

It cannot be a lack of adequate sanitation technologies as these exist for all situations from dispersed rural communities to high‐density low‐income urban areas. Nor cannot it be money as development banks will readily fund a well‐prepared sanitation proposal. The real sanitation problem must surely lie with those developing‐country governments who have shown little commitment in practice to sanitation despite international sanitation advocacy since 1980. Their lack of commitment is clearly shown in the number of ‘open defecators’ in the world today. There are fortunately some countries that have done well: Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, for example, but they are a clear minority.

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This article comes from the IDS Bulletin 43.2 (2012) Sanitation: What’s the Real Problem?

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Mara, D. (2012) Sanitation: What's the Real Problem?. IDS Bulletin 43(2): 86-92


Duncan Mara

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published by
Institute of Development Studies
Mara, Duncan


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