RésEAU Brief series


​​​​Download below the three first editions of the RésEAU Brief

RésEAU Brief 3 - Developing sustainable rural markets for resilient sanitation: lessons from Bangladesh

RésEAU Brief 2 - Promoting Social Water Entrepreneurship
RésEAU Brief 1 - Water: the key to sustainable food systems globally


​Dear colleagues

It is with great pleasure that we present the third edition of the RésEAU Brief series, a medium to share SDC’s learnings from water related projects and programmes at the global level. This edition focuses on how sanitation market systems can be developed, that are accessible to the poor, sustainable and that consider climate risks, drawing from experience in Bangladesh. 

More than five years into the SDGs and with 2030 in sight, the world is not on track to reach SDG target 6.2, to achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations. In 2020, 3.6 billion people lacked safely managed services, that is improved facilities not shared with other households and where excreta are safely disposed of in situ or removed and treated offsite. Of these, approximately half (1.9 billion) had basic services: improved facilities not shared with other households (WHO-UNICEF; 2021:49). Important progress has been made, especially also in Eastern and South-Eastern Asia, where population numbers not yet included in sanitation cover are high and where it is challenging to reach especially rural populations. 

Achieving universal access to safely managed services by 2030 will require a fourfold increase in current rates of progress (15x in least developed countries and 9x in fragile contexts) (WHO-UNICEF; 2021:9). This makes it paramount to ensure that current sanitation investments are climate and disaster resilient and designed considering environmental risks. This responds to SDG target 13.1, to strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries by 2030. 

SDC and its partners in Bangladesh have contributed to access to sanitation focussing on the rural population, through an approach that develops market systems in sanitation. The premise is that access to water supply, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) services needs to be ensured as a public service for poor and disadvantaged populations and as such a result of inclusive water governance. At the same time, access can be enabled through economic development, drawing in and developing private sector players (see the Swiss CooperationProgramme Bangladesh 2022–25). In addition, given rising social and economic losses due largely to weather extremes, WASH services will need to consider climate and disaster risk reduction measures. For the future, the consideration of climate change and disaster risks and minimizing harmful effects to the environment is to happen in at least 30% of SDC’s portfolio in Bangladesh. A concrete example on how is given in this brief. 

In this RésEAU Brief, SDC staff and partners share their learnings from practice on how inclusive and sustainable sanitation market systems can be developed, to spark inspiration and offer guidance for similar actions. For further reading and a full range of resources, please refer to the RésEAU Shareweb, and keep up with sector news through our news site

We wish you happy reading and welcome comments! 

Read the full Brief here: RésEAU Brief 3-August 2022.pdf

Daniel Maselli, SDC RésEAU Focal Point daniel.maselli@eda.admin.ch 
Syeda Zinia Rashid, Senior Programme Officer of the Embassy of Switzerland in Bangladesh syeda-zinia.rashid@eda.admin.ch
Bernita Doornbos, Editor RésEAU Brief and backstopper to the RésEAU bernita.doornbos@helvetas.org​​