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Safe drinking water: who is willing to pay the price?

This , the second issue of the Evidence Matters series, distills policy relevant evidence from a recent 3ie systematic review ‘Willingness to pay for cleaner water in less developed countries". The review summarises research from Bangladesh, Ghana, Kenya and Zambia.

Some of the lessons learned include:

  • Many people are not willing to pay for safe drinking water. Even paying a small fee puts people off using water treatment technologies.
  • Understanding why people are not keen to pay and how much they might pay if they had the right information could help overcome these barriers.
  • Subsidizing the costs of water treatment technologies can improve their uptake, but large subsidies are required. Cheaper and innovative technologies and distribution models may encourage people to change their behaviour and start using water treatment technologies which would improve their health.

Evidence Matters is produced by 3ie with support from IDS Knowledge Services.