Are national WASH M&E system important for accountability and transparency?

When policy and the roles and responsibilities of service providers and government are unclear, it is difficult for civil society to advocate  and tackle issues of accountability. Who is ultimately responsible for ensuring basic and safely managed WASH services, in rural areas and small towns were clear contractual arrangements are not necessarily well defined or sustainable? When these are clear, are there agreed measures of service performance and who is measuring and communicating results? It is crucial to hold parties accountable for their actions and promises.

Sometimes civil society may fill the evidence gap but then the agreed level of performance becomes a moving target. Government and service providers may choose to discount the methods used and results on the basis that they are not ‘approved’ or even ‘wrong’.

Establishing a national WASH M&E system is complex  and it requires clarifying a matrix of roles and responsibilities so that it is clear who is reporting what and why. Using and communicating results is an important step in holding sector stakeholders accountable .

Indeed, for change and improvement at all levels, there is a need to engage in dialogue around sector performance in WASH service delivery.

WASHCost Share quick start

This blog has originally been posted on The tools mentioned in the blog are accessible from the original post. 

Access and share life-cycle costs quickly

Before getting started

WASHCost Share is a tool to access the cost of water and sanitation services based on shared data. Use the tool to access reports and to make this information available to end-users, service providers and governments and to start to plan for sustainable services. Access the tool through the basic and advanced shared reports under “Useful links”.

The tool is based on the life-cycle costs approach developed by IRC to establish the real cost of water and sanitation services.

This tool will help users consider:

  • Initial setup costs as well as recurrent expenditures (per person per year).
  • Life-cycle costs compared to the level of service in a service area
  • Data on the cost household sanitation and public water supplies in the service area.

Please ensure you have internet access and visit the shared report using the internet address of the report.

To know more about the life-cycle costs approach, use the resources at the end of this article. If you have a specific question about the life-cycle costs approach or the tool after reading this document, please use the KnowledgePoint support service or follow the Costing Sustainable Service training.

The tool includes household sanitation and public water supplies.
Report creation page

Register an account

Before you can share reports and save them to your dashboard, register an account by simply clicking on one of the shared reports at the bottom of this page or use the “Sign In” button in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.