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Operationalising the right to water and sanitation and gender equality via appropriate technology in rural Nepal

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHuman Rights and Technology
EditorsMariateresa Garrido Villareal
Place of PublicationCosta Rica
PublisherUniversity of Peace, Costa Rica
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)978-9930-542-00-2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2017
Publication typeA3 Part of a book or another research book


Can a tap, a squat toilet, or an improved cooking stove – all simple rural technologies – make a contribution to achieving human rights and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)? What are the ‘soft’ elements, beyond the technology, that are needed? This article explores how, the principles of human rights based approach (HRBA), gender equality and social inclusion (GESI) are mainstreamed and operationalized through two bilateral rural water projects in Nepal - the Finland and Nepal-funded Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Project in Western Nepal (RWSSP-WN) and the Rural Village Water Resources Management Project (RVWRMP). The projects utilise a combination of hands-on technical assistance, community participation and appropriate technologies to achieve the Right to Water and Sanitation, as well as making a contribution to the SDGs. The technologies include water supply systems; renewable energy, including micro-hydropower schemes, improved cooking stoves, improved water mills and hydraulic ram pumps; as well as water seal toilets. However, simply providing technology is not enough. It is critical that it is applied within a strong planning and implementation framework, integrated in local government and communities, but supported with skilful facilitation. This case study focuses on the results achieved and critical lessons learned regarding gender equality and empowerment (SDG 5), and access to water and sanitation (SDG 6). The lessons learned, including the important role of the technical staff in the project modality, are valuable for planners and implementers of water and sanitation projects elsewhere.


  • 214 Mechanical engineering, Water and Sanitation, 5203 Development Studies, Human Rights, Gender, Nepal, Social Inclusion

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland