WIN News - November 2019
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Photo and design competition: now open!

Integrity in urban water and sanitation

This year’s competition focuses on the dynamics of corruption and integrity in the urban water and sanitation sector. Submit up to two images or designs related to the theme to win a 700 euro prize.

New this year, we are going beyond photography and welcoming entries including visual art work (graphic design, painting, illustrations etc.). We are also introducing a special prize for young artists!


Gender and water integrity, and the scale of sextortion

We've been working on gender and water integrity throughout the year, discussing with partners how their work affects and supports women. We've seen how corruption affects women differently than men and we've also seen how important it is to consider the impact of our interventions for WASH or integrity in terms of gender.

Sanitation and Water for All have also been looking at gender as a theme for the month of October. They have posted a series of blog posts, including insight on women with disabilities, who are even more vulnerable and still too often overlooked.

More research is needed to better understand these different dynamics. There is also a major implementation gap for gender mainstreaming: it's time to act to ensure that the issue of gender is tackled in all water governance and integrity programmes. As a first step, more space must be provided for women to participate in decision-making and to voice their perception of corruption.

In this context, the results of the latest Transparency International Global Corruption Barometer for Latin America are worth delving into in detail. For example, findings suggest that “one in five people experiences sexual extortion – or sextortion – when accessing a government service, like health care or education, or knows someone who has”; these are shockingly high figures.


The dramatic impact of water pollution and why we shouldn't hide the integrity dimensions of the problem or solutions

Mid-October, thousands of dead fish washed up on the shores of the Mar Menor lagoon in Spain. Decades of systematic breakdowns in regulation, enforcement, and monitoring have led to the situation.

How does one get to this point? What are the consequences of a lack of integrity in water management? These are some of the questions that the journalists of Datadista covered in their investigation of the current crisis in the Mar Menor, an investigation WIN supported via its water integrity journalism fund.

Nearly at the same time, we've been seeing new photos of yearly ritual festivities in the highly polluted river Yamuna in India spreading in the media. These are a sad reminder of the winning photo of our 2017 photo competition on integrity and wastewater. Is there still room for change? What has led to this situation?

These cases are only making more clear that water pollution is indeed more ubiquitous and problematic across the globe than previously acknowledged, as emphasized in the World Bank report Quality Unknown. The report points out transparency and monitoring are key to improving the situation but solutions are not evident. It is particularly interesting for how it takes into account the corruption risks related to policy and technology options moving forward (see chapter 6).


What is open government and how can it support water and sanitation service delivery?

Open government is based on transparent policy and participation or co-creation in the policy cycle. Accountability and anti-corruption are key principles.

Because political and social challenges take their toll, including fragmented management and corruption, tackling today’s water challenges will require more than improving infrastructure and stepping up investments.Adopting open government reforms can help strengthen institutional capacity, facilitate coordination between stakeholders, and resolve information asymmetries to promote fairer, more reliable, and more efficient water and sanitation service delivery.

To support such processes, Fundación Avina, the Open Government Partnership, SIWI, WIN, and WRI formed a Community of Practice on Water and Open Government. The community is meant as a space to gather and share experiences on innovative water sector reforms focused on integrity principles, like that of São Paulo's new water security policy.

Do you have more information or case studies that are related to these issues and questions? Please share your experiences and expertise with the network!


Water integrity as an opportunity: the relationship between climate change finance and the water sector

with GIZ

Increasing global climate adaptation funds are being channeled through relatively untested funding sources, often in highly corrupt contexts. This policy brief examines the growing corruption risks in climate change finance and recommends action to strengthen the water sector.


Social accountability and water integrity: learning from experiences with participatory and transparent budgeting in Ethiopia and Nepal

with U4 Anti-Corruption Research Centre

This analysis of participatory and transparent budgeting programmes in Ethiopia and Nepal  found that these social accountability approaches create real opportunities for citizen collaboration but that established local power dynamics and mismatches between project scope and user expectations can be significant obstacles.


Innovations for water management in São Paulo: the leading role of civil society

with the Water and Open Government CoP

What exactly are the real water management responsibilities of Brazilian municipalities? Even in the midst of the São Paulo water crisis, the answer to this simple question was not evident. The quest for an answer led to a multi-stakeholder campaign for a new law for water security, focused on increasing transparency and accountability.


Making integrity work: lessons from the Multi-Country Water Integrity Programme

with Helvetas, Caritas, and cewas

A review of the MCWIP programme in Guatemala, Kenya, Mozambique, and Nepal from 2012 to 2019 offers lessons for launching water integrity programmes and navigating complex, multi-lateral projects.


AMCOW pledges to promote water integrity through partnership with WIN

AMCOW and WIN signed an MoU in August 2019 to guide the development and implementation of strategic collaborative programmes. As a first step, we are working together on the development of an integrity risk management framework for the AMCOW secretariat.


Women as managers of water committees: the case of the Molle Molle Central Water Committee

with Aguatuya (Bolivia)

How water committees operate in Bolivia, and the case of one women taking the lead to increase transparency and accountability to improve service for her community.

Photo credits: 1. Marco Simola, WIN photo competition 2011

Copyright © 2019 Water Integrity Network, All rights reserved.

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