William van der Byl
An investigation of private operator models for the management of rural water supply in sub-Saharan Africa
Concerns over rural water service functionality and sustainability have led to a range of alternative rural water supply (RWS) management models being investigated and trialled, including the private operator (PO) management model. This study aimed to construct a rapid assessment framework (RAF) to determine if the PO management model is appropriate for RWS. Data collection consisted of a review of literature and interviews conducted with key informants involved in RWS in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The synthesis of the literature review and interview analysis findings resulted in six themes, critical to the PO management model, being identified. In the right circumstances, PO management models can be a viable option to help address the sustainability of RWS in SSA. However, private sector involvement is not a panacea for RWS and, therefore a mix of management models is required if sustainable development goal 6 is to be achieved.