Acceptance and adequate use of water and sanitation technologies in least developed countries is still a chimera, with one billion people using unimproved water supply sources and 2.5 billion not benefitting from adequate sanitation. Public participation in water and sanitation planning and pre-implementation phases has become increasingly important for technology providers seeking solutions to implementation challenges towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Based on the principle that successful implementation of WATSAN technologies ultimately depends on recipients' ability to absorb a technology and adapt it to their own needs, this study analyses the impacts of participatory methods adopted by community-based sanitation (CBS) providers on communities' receptivity of the transferred systems. A fieldwork activity was undertaken in Indonesia and a multiple case study approach adopted to analyse indicators of receptivity of the transferred technologies. Conclusions show that community involvement through participatory methods in the implementation of CBS systems can enhance the process of acceptance and management of the technologies, thereby increasing the progress towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.
Keywords: community participation, technology assessment, users' receptivity