Estimating the cost and payment for sanitation in the informal settlements of Kisumu, Kenya : a cross sectional study

Simiyu, Sheillah ; Swilling, Mark ; Rheingans, Richard ; Cairncross, Sandy (2017)

CITATION: Simiyu, S., et al. 2017. Estimating the cost and payment for sanitation in the informal settlements of Kisumu, Kenya: a cross sectional study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(1):49, doi:10.3390/ijerph14010049.

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Lack of sanitation facilities is a common occurrence in informal settlements that are common in most developing countries. One challenge with sanitation provision in these settlements is the cost and financing of sanitation. This study aimed at estimating the cost of sanitation, and investigating the social and economic dynamics within Kisumu’s informal settlements that hinder provision and uptake of sanitation facilities. Primary data was collected from residents of the settlements, and using logistic and hedonic regression analysis, we identify characteristics of residents with sanitation facilities, and estimate the cost of sanitation as revealed in rental prices. Our study finds that sanitation constitutes approximately 54% of the rent paid in the settlements; and dynamics such as landlords and tenants preferences, and sharing of sanitation facilities influence provision and payment for sanitation. This study contributes to general development by estimating the cost of sanitation, and further identifies barriers and opportunities for improvement including the interplay between landlords and tenants. Provision of sanitation in informal settlements is intertwined in social and economic dynamics, and development approaches should target both landlords and tenants, while also engaging various stakeholders to work together to identify affordable and appropriate sanitation technologies.

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