A stakeholder analysis exercise for Public Policy in India course

To: CEO, Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB), New Delhi

The NUSP lays down several issues and goals towards a broad vision to “transform Urban India into community-driven, totally sanitized, healthy and livable cities and towns.” The political crisis impending upon us and the President’s rule gives us a unique opportunity to initiate a constitution of an advisory committee consisting of ULB MCD Commissioner, Jal Board head and DUSIB CEO to come together on common issues and formulate a comprehensive institutional roles and responsibilities structure for integration of Delhi’s fragmented safe-sanitation cycle. I recommend this as a priority as there is a high incentive for the central leadership to take up issues that impact huge voter base, prioritizing this will set institutional benchmarks to our benefit which would be hard to reverse regardless of who comes to power in Delhi. We must liaise with the Chief Secretary’s office to ensure this gets legitimacy. The trade-off here is between a long-term positive association with these state agencies and a possible share of our budget.

Bio-toilets and their benefits outweigh challenges. Even as the advisory committee gets constituted, we must collaborate with private parties like Banka BioLoo for piloting-toilets in the JJ clusters. We must collaborate with research experts in IIT-Kanpur and DRDO along with the PPP players to ensure a unique bio-toilet solution tailored for JJ clusters. I recommend a constitution of a “task-force” chaired by DUSIB, consisting the above stakeholders and NGOs working in behavior change towards safe sanitation and open defecation. This will not only give DUSIB grounded solution-side understanding but also reinvigorate our staff, as this will be a dynamic forum where they can exchange ideas, learn ground realities and engage with new technology trends.

Education of safe-sanitation practices and benefits through NGOs. Many NGOs share our goals of educating and bringing about behavioral change in the JJ clusters. I recommend a constant engagement with their work and lessons learned. We must collaborate with NGOs with a business interest in bio-toilets, to influence them to work towards neutralizing stigmas around using biogas for households. I recommend a systematic intervention to make the JJ clusters understand the costs and benefits of using biogas so that the economic incentive becomes apparent and in turn affects behavioral change.

Gradual downscale of traditional toilets’ building. Getting used to the technology of bio-toilets has cultural implications and the switch must be incremental. We must work with microfinance groups like SEWA, Fodra etc, to continue providing cluster indigenous sanitation solutions. Our associations in the aforementioned advisory committee should help us leverage efficient sewerage networks and maintenance. An adverse implication of this could be a short-term hindrance to our long-term bio-toilet push.

A case for public health, environmental and ecological sustainability. We must work with academic experts, research organizations like IIT-Kanpur and DRDO, to bring out whitepapers, case-studies and data-driven research to highlight the ecological, environmental and health benefits of our bio-toilet push to promote “safe sanitation and clean cooking”. This will not only give us the legitimacy to continue with the initiative and give us positive coverage in the media but also give aspiring political leaders a cause to continue the initiative if they can clearly visualize positive indicators from credible agencies.

Annexure

Fig.1 maps stakeholders’ relative powers and influences on the issue of safe-sanitation in Delhi’s slums. DUSIB, along with MCD, Jal Board, IIT-Kanpur, DRDO, and NGOs in the space of safe and affordable sanitation are the main players here. As there is a window of opportunity in President’s rule, President’s office (in turn central executive), has considerable power in the State administration. As the ULB MCD, statutory bodies Jal Board and DUSIB come under the Delhi state government, it is pertinent to consider President’s office a ‘context setter’ for the overall administration of Delhi and a unifying force.

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Fig. 2 Links the issues/policy goals of NUSP with groups of stakeholders, based on their interest towards the issue. The motives behind the interest, mechanisms through which they seek to invest in the interest may vary, but a coalition can be thought of between groups with maximum overlaps of issues. The three state agencies form a distinct group with visibly common interests in awareness and behaviour change towards sanitation, abatement of social and occupational hazards of sanitation works, reorganizing the fragmented institutional structure, integration of sanitation cycle at the level of various activities and finally a larger vision of open-defecation free Delhi. DUSIB also has some common interests with NGOs and the PPP contenders like Banka BioLoo. Those are making sure safe sanitation reaches the underserved and working towards an overall behavioral change towards sanitation.b2.png

DUSIB : Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board
JJ : Jhuggi Jhopri clusters settlements
NUSP : National Urban Sanitation Policy
Prez office : President’s office (includes central executive and civil bureaucracy headed by the Chief Secretary)
NGO+ : Water-Aid, Sulabh International, Wokchardt Foundation
SHG+ : Self-help and microfinance groups SEWA, BISWA, Waterforpeople, Gaurdian, VSSU, Fodra
R&D+ : IIT-Kanpur and DRDO as technical experts on bio-toilet models
PPP : Public-Private-Partnerships with NGOs like Banka BioLoo
MCD+ : MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) and Jal Board

Fig. 3 distinguishes the stakeholders by their possible strategic positions towards DUSIB’s cause of safe-sanitation initiative. PPP players like NGO Banka BioLoo are the most important stakeholders to involve. Other NGOs and R&D organizations must be collaborated with for maximum expertize and impetus to DUSIB’s initiative.

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b4.pngBelow is the rationale behind the predictions in Fig 4:

  1. As more NGOs are entrusted with the job of education on sanitation and addressing perception issues about using the biogas from bio-toilets, their positions and influence rise.
  2. This results in increased mobilization of JJ clusters and they move to ‘supporters’.
  3. As more bio-toilet setting up and end-to-end operations are entrusted with PPP (like Banka BioLoo) the operational burden of MCD and Jal board decreases, decreasing their influence but also reducing their opposition for increased toilet installations.
  4. This happens in tandem with careful contestation of technology ideas from R&D organizations like DRDO and IIT-Kanpur. Presently, these organizations are doing this in isolation and they need to be engaged with.
  5. As the DUSIB involves more Private players in delivering better bio-toilets and more accountable O&M, its influence increases, increasing the support and influence of private partners in turn.
  6. Given the political climate of Delhi, some redirection of authority is expected from President’s office and any monitoring teams that the central executive is directed to set up.
  7. By involving microfinance groups to help the clusters continue building their own toilets, but with the bio-digester technology, their positions of influence rise.

Course instructor: Dr. Harish Jagannath