GPSA Knowledge Platform

GPSA Discussion with Experts: Improving Water Governance through Social Accountability

With Blanche Cotlear, Ghazia Aslam and Charlotte Ornemark

From March 28-April 14



About the E-Forum

Over the last decade, governments and donors have increased budget allocations to water services and infrastructure in many countries around the world, but this has not translated into proportionate results on the ground. Several governance constraints undermine effective water service delivery, notably low institutional capacity, poor incentives, information asymmetries between citizens and service providers, and weak accountability mechanisms. Against this background, emerging evidence indicates that strengthening the capacity of civil society to implement social accountability tools can play a positive role in overcoming governance challenges, which lie at the heart of poor service delivery.

This Discussion with experts will contribute to: (1) learning about CSO, citizen, water providers, and government capacity to implement social accountability strategies and tools in order to monitor and improve water service delivery; (2) understanding how citizen feedback that can be used to inform the design and implementation of water governance projects; and (3) exploring how gendered approaches to social accountability programming in the water sector can be transformative for women and girls.

The Discussion will be last three weeks and will be moderated by three experts addressing different questions related to water governance.


About the moderators

Ghazia Ghazia Aslam is a Public Policy Fellow at George Mason University and teaches at George Washington University’ Political Science Department. She received a doctorate in public policy from George Mason University in 2011. She also consults with international organizations including World Bank, United Nations and DFID on issues of citizen participation, governance and state-society relations in South Asia, the Middle East and Africa.





Blanche Blanche Cotlear is an expert on Governance in the Water and Sanitation Sector. She has twenty-three years of professional experience working on governance in LAC, Africa, and Eastern Europe. Developed strategies and tools to monitor sector and program performance to expand coverage and to improve quality. Author of more than a dozen case studies published by the World Bank and by the IADB on governance in water and sanitation. Winner of the World Bank Governance Award 2010 for the Water Program in Kenya. Lead the development of a Training Module about “Good Communication for the Water Reform”, which was delivered in many countries of North Africa and Middle East  after the “Arab Spring”. Lead an award program in Uganda used to monitor water quality in rural areas comparing output-based aid with programs without output-based aid funds. International experience covering directly Peru, Ecuador, Chile, Bolivia, Colombia, Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Uruguay, Dominican Republic, Uganda, Kenya and Ukraine; and indirectly many other countries of the globe.


CharlotteCharlotte Örnemark is an international consultant who has carried out assignments in countries across Africa, Asia, Europe and North America. Ms. Örnemark is specialized in how to communicate, advocate and manage for results in the area of international cooperation and development. She combines her skills in communications, evidence-based planning and monitoring and evaluation with extensive experience in the area of strategy development and organizational and social change with a focus on gender equality, human rights and democratic governance.




In order to participate in this Discussion with Experts , you will need to be registered in the GPSA Knowledge Platform and logged in. If you have not created your account yet, do it here. If you are already registered in the Knowledge Platform, you do not need to do anything. Just come back here on March 28th and make sure to log in the platform.


Interested in Social Accountability in the Water Sector?

The GPSA, Water Partnership Program and Oxfam are organizing the the Europe and Central Asia (ECA) Forum on Social Accountability in the water sector. CSOs in the ECA region with experience in collaborative social accountability who wish to participate, are invited to express their interest by sending a letter with motivation to the GPSA. Preference will be given to those with experience working in the water sector, although relevant background in other sectors will also be considered. More information:

March 23, 2017

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How Can I Contribute to the Knowledge Platform

You may contribute to the Knowledge Platform in many different ways: you can send and disseminate your social accountability materials (toolkits, reports, videos, etc.) in the knowledge repository; you can contact, interact and collaborate with other peers and join a global community of social accountability practitioners; you can participate in the different learning and knowledge exchange activities of the GPSA KP such as online courses, thematic forums, webinars and blogs; and you can develop a partnership with the GPSA KP to implement collaborative knowledge activities.

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