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Local government is important but in many of the poorest countries local government is very weak. So does this mean SanMark works best in better-off developing countries?

Roles and functions in sanitation marketing can be taken on by different actors in different situations, depending on what works best locally and which partners are available and motivated. If formal local government is non-existent or very weak, there are others who might be better placed to take on some of the functions and roles that local government should be playing, for example local traditional leaders, community leaders and elders, or community-based organizations. Initial assessments of the sanitation marketing opportunities and formative market research should include better understanding of the enabling environment and existing local institutions and structures that could be engaged to fulfill the different functions and roles to create demand and expand supply. Sanitation marketing is fundamentally about helping the market to reach the under-served and poorer market segments where the need is greatest, and has worked well in some of the world’s most economically poor countries.

Answer thanks to:

Mimi Jenkins

Research Engineer in Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California at Davis
Honorary lecturer in the Environmental Health Group at LSHTM


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