Governance and management of small rural water supplies: a comparative study
Small water supplies in Scotland are less likely to meet drinking water quality standards and likely to be managed by communities or individuals who may need support. We looked at how other countries manage small rural water supplies, to guide their governance and management in Scotland.
The Scottish Government, through Scotland’s Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW)
Small water supplies around the world face similar problems of low revenue, lack of investment and low quality of service. Many are the responsibility of communities or individuals who may need support in the management of their supply.
We studied how other countries manage these problems associated with the delivery of small rural water supplies, to provide recommendations for their governance and management in Scotland. Some of our recommendations were that:
- Information provided to guide risk assessment by users should be clearer and more accessible, especially around water safety plans and household level technologies.
- Better guidance and support could be given to communities who wish to form legal entities such as cooperatives, or access grants, to support their management of a small water supply.
- Information about incidents of disease linked to water quality should be publicly available.
- It should be made compulsory to test a private water supply on sale of a property.
Sarah Hendry and Ioanna Akoumianaki (2016). Governance and management of small rural water supplies: a comparative study. CRW2015/05.
Project lead(s)Professor Sarah Hendry
External team members
James Hutton Institute