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Urban community-led total sanitation: a potential way forward for co-producing sanitation services

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Community-led total sanitation (CLTS) has been proved to be a successful strategy for tackling the challenge of open defecation in poor rural communities across Africa and Asia. This article explores whether a similar approach can be used in peri-urban and urban areas to help co-produce sanitation facilities and services with inputs from communities, duty bearers, and other sanitation stakeholders. It is argued that an urban CLTS approach does not mean a copy and paste of tools and methods which have proved successful in the rural environment but following a set of similar principles. Based on field experiences different steps are suggested that incorporate these principles and respond to the specific urban sanitation problem. This article helps to articulate and better define urban CLTS as well as giving practical guidance for those wanting to use this kind of approach.

This article by Jamie Myers first appeared in Waterlines Vol. 35 No. 4 in October 2016.

Date: 6 December 2016