Linking resource users' perceptions and collective action in commons management – an examination of water supply systems in Southern Senegal

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

Poor maintenance of water supply systems is a critical issue in sub-Saharan Africa. Using survey data on users of motorized piped water supply systems in rural southern Senegal, this paper examines what motivates resource users to contribute financially to the management of water supply system infrastructure by paying their water tariff. Results from logistic regression analysis indicate that users who prefer borehole water and are satisfied with the service provided are more likely than others to pay. In addition, those who trust that other users will pay are more likely themselves to pay than those who do not trust their peers. These findings suggest that assessing the needs of users and providing services tailored to those needs (e.g., quality, convenience) is recommended for future interventions. The incorporation of programs that promote peer trust should also be considered as future interventions to establish or strengthen resource management organization.

Keywords: Collective action, Community-based resource management, Motorized water supply, Senegal

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