Research projects

PhD 15: Financing drinking water services in rural Eastern Africa *THIS POSITION HAS ALREADY BEEN FILLED


Host institution: University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Principal supervisor: Prof. Rob Hope
Co-supervisor: Prof. Nicholas Oguge
Non-academic co-supervisor: Mr. Cliff Nyaga

This PhD position will:

  1. Develop a theoretical approach to examine the relative positionality of (poor) user water payments in the context of ‘blended finance’
  2. Conduct a systematic review of ‘blended finance’ literature that explore pluralist institutional arrangements with a focus on rural Africa and Asia
  3. Administer qualitative research in a sample of communities in coastal Kenya to examine how and why water payments emerge, sustain or collapse over time
  4. Evaluate the relative importance and impact of shifting institutional arrangements between communities, the market and state in shaping water payment behaviours
  5. Propose a revised theoretical and empirical understanding of water payment behaviours to influence policy design on ‘blended finance’ which prioritises rural preferences to promote more sustainable and socially-acceptable interventions.

Expected results:

  1. Theoretical contribution to rural water payment behaviours and blended finance
  2. Analytical contribution to understand the processes and practices which shape water payment behaviours across social and cultural norms, with specific emphasis on gendered inequalities and environmental variability
  3. Methodological contribution through historical, quantitative analysis from payment ledgers to complement contemporary, diary analysis of how individuals, households and communities make water choices and payments on a daily basis under social, political and climatic change.


Dr. Rob Hope
Director of the Water Security Initiative
School of Geography and the Environment
University of Oxford, United Kingdom

Prof. Nicholas Oguge
Professor of Environmental Policy
Centre for Advanced Studies in Environmental Law and Policy (CASELAP)
University of Nairobi Kenya

Mr. Cliff Nyaga
Research manager at Reachwater in the Kitui County Government
FundiFix Ltd


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