In 1992, Dublin was the setting for the International Conference on Water and the Environment. Attended by the great and the good from governments and major agencies, the Conference issued a statement which neatly encapsulates the principles and policies which guide the W&S sector. But are these principles being implemented effectively — or are they nothing more than Irish mist?
The General Assembly of the United Nations established 2008 as the International Year of Sanitation (IYS). The IYS objective was to put the global community on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goal sanitation target. This paper describes how, as implemented, the IYS was a successful global advocacy and communications campaign which communicated five key messages: that access to basic sanitation improves health, generates economic development, promotes social development, helps the environment, and is universally achievable.