Table of Contents

Handbook on Water Security

Handbook on Water Security

Edited by Claudia Pahl-Wostl, Anik Bhaduri and Joyeeta Gupta

Water security has received increasing attention in the scientific and policy community in recent years. This Handbook covers the wide range of perspectives required to understand water security as a concept guiding water governance and management at different levels and in different regions. It reflects on past, present and future challenges to water security and strategies on how to overcome them. An invaluable resource for scientific scholars, it will also appeal policymakers and practitioners interested in a deeper understanding of this important concept.

Chapter 12: Human security and access to water, sanitation, and hygiene: exploring the drivers and nexus

Pedi Obani and Joyeeta Gupta

Subjects: environment, environmental management, water, politics and public policy, environmental politics and policy


Water security challenges are mostly covered in the literature on the food and energy nexus. This chapter however adopts a broader conception of water security in relation to lack of access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH), and argues that the human rights approach could be instrumental in addressing the drivers that hinder access to WASH. Through policy analysis and literature review the chapter addresses the following research questions: a) What is access to WASH? b) What are the drivers of poor access to WASH? c) What are the multi-level human security implications of the lack of access to WASH? d) What improvements can be made in the post-2015 development agenda to address the drivers and the related human security challenges? The chapter essentially illustrates the need to translate global human rights norms into contextually appropriate operational targets and instruments for policy implementation at the national and local levels.

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