Back To Resource Library

System Approaches to Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene: A Systematic Literature Review

Sustainable WASH Systems Learning Partnership
Year Published:
Resource Type:
Literature Review

SWS performed a systematic analysis of WASH sector literature to characterize system approaches applied to WASH service delivery, which was published in the journal Sustainability. Results from this analysis revealed a diverse range of applications, scope, analyses, tools, and frameworks used within systems approaches. Yet, most literature provides a dearth of information to evaluate the utility and efficacy of systems approaches for improving WASH service sustainability. Based upon the analysis, four recommendations are proposed for improving the evidence base regarding the use of WASH systems approaches: 1) diversifying methods that explicitly evaluate interconnections between factors within WASH systems; 2) expanding geopolitical applications; 3) improving reporting on resources required to implement given approaches; and 4) enhancing documentation of effects of systems approaches on WASH services.