Impacts and implications of mobile water payments in East Africa
School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford, United Kingdom; Rural Focus Ltd, Nanyuki, Kenya
The rapid growth in Africa's mobile communications sector offers new opportunities to address the continent's enduring water service challenges. This paper examines the impacts and implications of mobile water payments in East Africa. Based on interviews with managers from water service providers across four countries and analysis of household survey and billing data from a water supply scheme in Kenya, the study quantifies the impacts of mobile water payments and reveals the factors that drive and curtail customer adoption. Results suggest that if broader behavioural and operational constraints can be overcome, partnerships between mobile network operators and water service providers could lead to more sustainable water service access for inclusive, developmental outcomes. © 2012 Copyright 2012 International Water Resources Association.