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Water & Sanitation

An astonishing one-third of the world population, 2.5 billion people, lack access to basic sanitation, and over one billion people defecate out in the open. Water and sanitation issues still cause 6–7% of deaths in developing countries. 

Summaries and download links to all our research papers on Water & Sanitation below.

Publications

Bangladesh Priorities: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, Larsen

Even though 98 percent of Bangladeshis have access to either a well or piped water, 25 percent of households’ water sources contain arsenic levels that exceed the World Health Organization...

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Assessment Paper

Post-2015 Consensus: Water and Sanitation Assessment, Hutton

On drinking-water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) specifically, a highly consultative process has been managed by the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Program (JMP) since 2011, leading to a series of proposed WASH targets and indicators for the post-2015 period. These go beyond the MDG target on improved drinking water and basic sanitation: the targets also include hand washing, WASH outside the household, more advanced water and sanitation services, and accelerated coverage for poor and disadvantaged groups until the target year 2030. An interim target includes ending open defecation by the year 2025. This paper provides an evidence base with which to compare different WASH targets and world regions by benefit-cost ratio.

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Perspective Paper

Post-2015 Consensus: Water Resource Management Perspective, Whittington

Summary Both the UN Panel of Eminent Persons and the Open Working Group for Sustainable Development Goals struggled with how to frame goals for the broader water resources management challenge. It is...

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Perspective Paper

Post-2015 Consensus: Water and Sanitation Perspective, Whittington

Guy Hutton’s assessment paper is part of a series of publications from the WHO and World Bank which suggest that the benefits of water and sanitation interventions in developing countries are an...

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Viewpoint Paper

Post-2015 Consensus: Water and Sanitation Viewpoint, Ostrowski and Jones

Ostrowski and Jones note that the assessment paper is based correctly on the premise that achieving global WASH goals is essential to facilitating and accelerating achievement of a wide range of post...

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Policy Advice

Preliminary Benefit-Cost Assessment of Final OWG Targets

This report assesses the targets in the OWG’s Final Outcome Document from 19 July 2014. This builds upon the information presented in similar documents which the Copenhagen Consensus Center released...

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Policy Advice

Preliminary Benefit-Cost Assessment for 12th Session OWG Goals

The Copenhagen Consensus has updated our benefit-cost assessment of UN Post-2015 Millennium Development Goals for the 12th session of the Open Working Group. The Copenhagen Consensus will present...

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Policy Advice

Preliminary Benefit-Cost Assessment for 11th Session OWG Goals

Some of the world’s top economists have assessed the targets from the 11th session Open Working Group document into one of five categories, based on economic evidence: Phenomenal, Good, Fair, Poor and Uncertain.

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Assessment Paper

A Scorecard for Humanity: Water and Sanitation, Jeuland et al

Water and sanitation are emotive headline topics that still cause 6–7% of deaths in developing countries -- yet progress has been and will be extraordinary: the death rate related to water and sanitation per 1,000 in developing countries was 1.5 in 1950, slashed to 0.4 today and again to 0.2 by mid-century. Although the rate is falling the numbers are still high: deaths by 2050 will likely still be around 1.7 million, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa...

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Assessment Paper

Third Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Assessment, Rijsberman Zwane

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation has been written by Frank Rijsberman and Alix Zwane and released by the Copenhagen Consensus Center. The working paper used by the Expert Panel is...

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Perspective Paper

Third Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Perspective, Hutton

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation has been written by Frank Rijsberman and Alix Zwane and released by the Copenhagen Consensus Center. In addition two Perspective Paper have been released,...

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Perspective Paper

Third Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Perspective, Hanemann

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation has been written by Frank Rijsberman and Alix Zwane and released by the Copenhagen Consensus Center. In addition two Perspective Paper have been released,...

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Assessment Paper

Second Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Assessment, Whittington Hanemann Sadoff Jeuland

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation was prepared for the second Copenhagen Consensus by Dale Whittington, W. Michael Hanemann, Claudia Sadoff, and Marc Jeuland. The working paper used by the...

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Perspective Paper

Second Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Perspective, Davis

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation was prepared for the second Copenhagen Consensus by Dale Whittington, W. Michael Hanemann, Claudia Sadoff, and Marc Jeuland. Jenna Davis and Frank R...

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Perspective Paper

Second Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Perspective, Rijsberman Zwane

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation was prepared for the 2008 Copenhagen Consensus by Dale Whittington, W. Michael Hanemann, Claudia Sadoff, and Marc Jeuland. Jenna Davis and Frank R...

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Assessment Paper

Bill Gates for a Day: Water & Sanitation

In the year 2002, it was reported that 1.1 billion lacked access to improved drinking water sources and 2.6 billion lacked access to improved sanitation. In some less developed world regions, the proportion of the population lacking access to improved water supply and sanitation was disturbingly high, especially for improved sanitation access.

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Presentation

Bill Gates for a Day: Water & Sanitation presentation

Guy Hutton presented his findings on the subject of Water & Sanitation at the Bill Gates for a Day conference in March 2007.

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Assessment Paper

Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Assessment, Rijsberman

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation was prepared for the 2004 Copenhagen Consensus by Frank Rijsberman. The working paper used by the Expert Panel is available for download here, the...

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Perspective Paper

Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Perspective, Vaux

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation was prepared for the 2004 Copenhagen Consensus by Frank Rijsberman. Henry Vaux and John Boland wrote Perspective Papers in response.

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Perspective Paper

Copenhagen Consensus: Water and Sanitation Perspective, Boland

An Assessment Paper on Water and Sanitation was prepared for the 2004 Copenhagen Consensus by Frank Rijsberman. Henry Vaux and John Boland wrote Perspective Papers in response.

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Projects

A Scorecard for Humanity

A Scorecard for Humanity fits into the ongoing conversation between optimists and pessimists for the last half century. The central question has been: what is the state of the world? The results of our study have been published by Cambridge University Press under the book title How Much Have Global Problems Cost the World? A Scorecard from 1900 to 2050

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Copenhagen Consensus

The Copenhagen Consensus was our first project. The basic idea was to improve prioritization of the numerous problems the world faces, by gathering some of the world's greatest economists to a meeting where some of the biggest challenges in the world would be assessed.

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Copenhagen Consensus III

In 2004 and 2008, the Copenhagen Consensus Center held two major projects that helped to shape overseas development spending and philanthropic decisions for years to come. The third Copenhagen Consensus was the latest iteration of our ongoing work to prioritize the best solutions.

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Post-2015 Consensus

In 2015, the UN's Millennium Development Goals are expiring and the international community will set new goals. The Post-2015 Consensus brings together the world’s top economists, NGOs, international agencies and businesses to identify the goals with the greatest benefit-to-cost ratio for the next development agenda.

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Copenhagen Consensus II

The second Copenhagen Consensus took place 25-30 May in Copenhagen. Once again, our Expert Panel tackled the question, Imagine you had $75 billion to donate to worthwhile causes. What would you do, and where should we start? The Panel released a prioritized list recommending how best to tackle ten of the world's most pressing issues.

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Copenhagen Consensus Georgetown

Copenhagen Consensus 2006 followed a similar procedure to the first Copenhagen Consensus, drawing on the earlier exercise. Representatives had available to them the materials from the previous meeting, and over two days heard new presentations from acknowledged economists and UN experts for each of the ten challenge areas.

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