Authors: Ocloo, Kafui Afi
Title: Harnessing local potentials for peri-urban water supply in Ghana
Other Titles: Prospects and challenges
Language (ISO): en
Abstract: More recent development discourse favour a mix of top-down and bottom-up approaches in development. In the discussion that has ensued, much focus has been on the rural and urban contexts of development; thus, leaving the peri-urban situation hardly attended to. The fast growing phenomenon of peri-urban development in developing countries and its associated challenges requires that development discourses recognise and take it into account. Current discussions on the supply of potable water in developing countries have largely focused on the rural and urban contexts and reveal a peri-urban gap. This research seeks to contribute to the intellectual discourse by providing insights on the discourse on peri-urban development. This research into the harnessing of local potentials for peri-urban water supply draws mainly on the concepts of endogenous development and uses the theory of institutional economics as a supporting theory. It is largely a qualitative research which uses the case study methodology involving two cases in its empirical component, although it incorporates some quantitative methods. The empirical research involved the use of a mix of data gathering methods: interviews, observation and questionnaires. The main findings of the study are firstly that the quality of the local human resource base from which the leadership of the entire development process is drawn is intrinsic and vital to the determination of the success of the development process with positive and negative potentials. Again, the existence of appropriate local institutions and the creation of an enabling local development environment as well as the presence of institutional interests that generally support the local development process are important. Nonetheless, there exists a seemingly complex and subtle power-play that supports or stifles the success of the water systems depending on who are involved in the system at a particular time. Other key revelations of the research relate to the potentials and the inherent weaknesses of the pluralist leadership system in supporting local development processes; and how in-country pilot projects which form the basis for the formulation of cross country institutional frameworks are not certain to yield successfully functioning frames because they still can be distant to local contexts and appreciation. The study suggests that there exist good prospects for the pursuit of endogenous development in the peri-urban context and concludes by providing suggestions relating to policy, practice and the conceptual underpinnings of the research. It recommends that pluralist leadership systems be made less susceptible to variations in actors? stance; through the formalization of verbal agreements especially in societies that are heavily dependent on oral communication. Notwithstanding the benefits of pilot projects, this study recommends that the local level is rather assisted to develop its own institutions through processes that may be guided by the outcomes of pilots. It suggests this as a means to achieving a favourable institutional environment in which local institutions can thrive. At conceptual level, the study also recommends that elements of individual decision-making be given more prominence in the endogenous development model.
Subject Headings: Ghana
Local institutions
Local resources
Peri-urban development
Water supply
Subject Headings (RSWK): Ghana
Issue Date: 2012-08-01
Appears in Collections:Ver- und Entsorgungssysteme in der Raumplanung

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