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Water Integrity Global Outlook 2016


‘When we talk to families living without water and sanitation we hear a clear message: that good leadership and management and an end to corruption are critical.’

— Barbara Frost, Chief Executive, WaterAid

The world’s water has never been under greater pressure, with unprecedented demands for use in human consumption, agriculture, industry and power generation. How can a growing global population ensure that water remains available, clean and sustainable?

The Water Integrity Global Outlook 2016 (WIGO) captures a growing recognition of the need for good governance and measures to eliminate corruption to improve sector performance. It emphasizes the need for transparency, accountability and participation (TAP) to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG 6 on water and sanitation.

WIGO highlights how institutional fragmentation and corruption undermine resources and services. It demonstrates how integrity and good governance have become international and national priorities and outlines tools and techniques that make improvements achievable. It makes recommendations for action by governments, sector actors, the private sector and civil society bodies.

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Who wins? Who loses? Corruption in the water sector has long-lasting widespread impact


1. A Global Mandate for Water Integrity

Integrity is essential to protect and conserve water. It is required to deliver on global development commitments and to address challenges on climate change, food production, sustainable energy and the human rights to water and sanitation.

2. The Importance of Policies and Laws

Policies and laws can be targeted to fulfill the human rights to water and sanitation. Enforcement is required with citizen participation to impact on everyday practice.

3. Following the Money

Urgent steps are needed to strengthen public financial management systems and heal the fragmentation that puts water resources at risk. There are challenges in increasing financial flows from taxes, tariffs and transfers to meet commitments. Civil society has a critical role in stemming financial corruption.

4. From Planning to Implementation

Preparing and implementing water projects and programmes are risk areas for corruption and integrity loss. Good and bad practice examples are shared with guidance to raise standards.

5. Approaches and Tools for Enhancing Integrity

Effective integrity risk management rests on a broad range of integrity tools, combined with advocacy and capacity development, designed to fit local contexts.

6. What Counts? Monitoring and Evaluating Water Integrity

Monitoring and evaluation are critical to enhancing performance and integrity. Community bodies can act as watchdogs and play a more active role in decision-making processes.

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