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Can new partnerships get urban water working?

Written by Josephine Tucker

The world is going urban. Sixty percent of the global population is expected to live in urban areas by 2030, according to the UN Population Fund. Delivering water services across swelling towns and cities is a huge challenge, and in sub-Saharan Africa the proportion of urban people with household water connections has already fallen, from 43% in 1990 to 35% in 2008.

Based on lessons learnt from a recent review of urban water partnerships carried out by ODI's Water Policy Programme, this Opinion considers how new kinds of partnerships could help meet the water needs of African cities by building the core capacities of water providers and finding new ways to serve the hard-to-reach.