Institutional frameworks for onsite sanitation management systems

In many countries, particularly developing ones, onsite wastewater systems remain an important measure for sanitation management. The poor situation of onsite sanitation systems is a common phenomenon in both developed and developing countries. The fundamental issue of onsite systems is that they are not considered to be a public matter, and, since many people do not care about them, they are not even a private matter. Thus, onsite sanitation is “no person’s land.” This case study discusses how to make onsite systems a public matter at each step of the sanitation service chain, taking Japan’s onsite system, which is very much a public matter, as a reference. To improve the onsite systems in other countries, it may not be necessary to use the same framework as the one in Japan; it must be one that reflects the unique situation of each country. Having said that, the framework in Japan would be a useful reference for any country that wants to improve its onsite system.

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