Interview with Alexander Fischer from Oxford University

Date of interview: 2017/06/07

During the development of the white paper “Harnessing Water Point Data to Improve Drinking Water Services”, WASHNote spoke to Alexander Fischer, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Oxford, at the time researching drinking water security, application of geospatial information systems, and sustainable resource governance. Complementary to the use of national water point atlases, the local context of the data matters.

“I’m interested in the characteristics and elements of the institutional change, specifically around the value of water point data in this process. I hope to find ways to enhance the scope and use of standardized water point data across multiple scales of decisionmakers, including local level service enterprises. In most regions of Bangladesh, for instance, water quality and specifically arsenic testing of tubewells, is a critical variable for drillers, users, and regulators whereas non-functionality rates are comparatively lower and secondary water points in close proximity.”




Interview Antonio Rodriguez Serrano from The World Bank

Date of interview: 2017/06/01

In June 2017, WASHNote spoke to Antonio Rodriguez Serrano, Senior Water and Sanitation Specialist and SIASAR team leader. We discussed how our water supply system was to be transformed, we spoke about barriers and about a vision for the future systems for water and sanitation services.

At the current rate of investments and infrastructure failure national policy targets and the SDGs are not going to be met. To achieve these targets we need to shift to providing services instead of infrastructure.

“We have to keep the current services functional. The most critical question is not how to breach the gap to 100% coverage, it is how to sustain the services. Data we collect should help us to understand the factors that affect the sustainability of water services in rural communities and address the problems communities are having in a certain area. Data that does not trigger action should not be collected.”

Furthermore, the aim of data collection and the responsibility one has when collecting data was discussed.

“Every data collection has a cost – a recurrent cost. If this recurrent cost is not justified by the use of the data to inform decisions the data collection exercise is not justified.”