As water is widely regarded as a public good, and there is a growing international movement to get safe drinking water and sanitation recognised as human rights, it follows that there should be free and unrestricted access to information on water supply, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). Removing access barriers to this information will accelerate research, enrich education, share the learning and best practices of the rich with the poor and the poor with the rich, increase transparency, and make this information as useful as it can be for all those supporting safe water and sanitation for all.

In the rush towards reaching target 7C of the MDGs, a tendency emerges to concentrate on the funding of “hardware” (construction), without balancing the necessary inputs in “software” (capacity development, knowledge management). This increases the risk of ignoring the lessons learned from investment, programme failures and relevant best practices – particularly when this information is not readily available or easily accessible.

This blog will provide updates on activities and tools that support the removal of access barriers to WASH information especially through the promotion of open access and information literacy.