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Sanitation remains one of the biggest development challenges of our time, and a long neglected issue associated with taboos and stigma. Despite growing attention and efforts, many top-down approaches to sanitation have failed, reflecting that simply providing people with a toilet does not necessarily guarantee its use. The Community-Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach offers a more promising alternative, focusing on facilitating a profound change in people?s behavior through participatory techniques. By raising local people?s awareness of the linkages between open defecation and disease through the release of powerful emotions such as disgust and shame, they are encouraged to analyze their own sanitation situation and take action themselves.
The approach has proved immensely successful, being implemented in more than 20 countries, and has a big potential in terms of achieving several Millennium Development Goals. However, like any development success story, challenges still remain regarding scaling up with quality, inclusion of the poorest and sustainability and there is a danger that accounts of success may be exaggerated. This book addresses both the potential and challenges of CLTS by drawing on research in Bangladesh, India and Indonesia as well as experiences from Africa.
With chapters by leading scholars and practitioners in sanitation policy and practice as well as critical reflections from key players in CLTS,Shit Matters offers important insights into the workings of CLTS on the ground, covering critical aspects of the social, ecological, technological, financial and institutional dynamics surrounding CLTS. It will be essential reading for anyone interested in development, health, public policy and sanitation issues.