Costing Improved Water Supply Systems for Low-income Communities: A Practical Manual


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Publication Date: 15/08/2015

Pages: 256

Binding: Paperback

ISBN13: 9781780407210

eISBN: 9781780407227

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This manual and the free downloadable costing tool is the outcome of a project identified by the Water, Sanitation and Health Programme (WSH) of the World Health Organization (WHO) faced with the challenge of costing options for improved access, both to safe drinking water and to adequate sanitation. Although limited in scope to the process of costing safe water supply technologies, a proper use of this material lies within a larger setting considering the cultural, environmental, institutional, political and social conditions that should be used by policy decision makers in developing countries to promote sustainable development strategies.

Costing Improved Water Supply Systems for Low-income Communities provides practical guidance to facilitate and standardize the implementation of social life-cycle costing to “improved” drinking-water supply technologies. These technologies have been defined by the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation, as those that, by the nature of its construction, adequately protect the source of water from outside contamination, in particular with faecal matter. The conceptual framework used has also been conceived to be applied to costing improved sanitation options.

To facilitate the application of the costing method to actual projects, a basic tool was developed using Microsoft Excel, which is called a water supply costing processor. It enables a user-friendly implementation of all the tasks involved in a social life-cycle costing process and provides both the detailed and the consolidated cost figures that are needed by decision-makers. The tool is available to download here.

The scope and the limits of the costing method in a real setting was assessed through field tests designed and performed by local practitioners in selected countries. These tests were carried out in Peru and in six countries in the WHO regions of South-East Asia and the Western Pacific. They identified practical issues in using the manual and the water supply costing processor and provided practical recommendations.

About the authors, Foreword, Preface and Acknowledgements.

Chapter 1 - Background and objectives: Water and health; Social valuation of water supply projects; Costing method; Target audience.

Chapter 2 - Conceptual framework: Identifying locally appropriate technologies; Costing a drinking-water supply technology.

Chapter 3 -  Improved drinking-water supply technologies for low-income communities: Drinking-water supply systems; Objectives of drinking-water supply; Improved drinking-water supply technologies.

Chapter 4 - Locally appropriate technologies: Concept of locally appropriate technology; Criteria for the identification of constraints and risks; Assessment of water supply needs; Selection of locally appropriate water supply technologies.

Chapter 5 - Costing method: Rationale and issues; Typology of costs; Sources of data on costs; Costing questionnaires; Social costing of water supply projects.

Chapter 6 - Costing implementation: The process of costing a water supply project; The Water Supply Costing Processor (WSCP); An introduction to the use of the WSCP.

Annexes: Drinking-water supply technologies; Project questionnaires; Inputs of improved water supply technologies; Costing questionnaires; Time profiles of a beta distribution function; Costing case studies in Peru.

References and Glossary

Fabrizio Carlevaro

Cristian Gonzalez

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