MCC RSWA Impact Evaluation


Impact Evaluation of the MCA’s Rural Water Supply Activity (RWSA) in Nampula, Mozambique

Role: Co-PI with Prof. Jennifer Davis at Stanford University.

Client: U.S. Millennium Challenge Corporation

MCC Research Results Portal

Picture1In 2007, the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) signed a $506.9 million compact designed to reduce poverty in Mozambique by promoting sustainable economic growth. Among the planned investments was the installation of 600 improved water points in rural communities across the provinces of Nampula and Cabo Delgado. In addition to the installation of the water points, the Rural Water Points Installation Program (RWPIP) also mobilized water committees to maintain the infrastructure and provided trainings to water committees and community members. Most of the water points are boreholes equipped with Afridev handpumps, but in Cabo Delgado ten small-scale solar systems (SSSS) were installed where there was sufficient water supply and unmet demand. The Rural Water Supply Activity (RWSA) of the Mozambique Compact is intended to increase sustainable access to improved water supply in some of the country’s poorest districts.

This research evaluated the impact of the MCA’s RWPIP in Nampula and eight of the SSSS that were installed in Cabo Delgado at the time of the follow-up study. The research was undertaken by a team of researchers from Stanford University and Virginia Tech over a period of five years.

The objectives of the RWSA, as stated in the MCC Compact with the Government of Mozambique, are to increase beneficiary productivity and income by:

  1. Providing time savings by reducing the time burden of water collection. Time savings from an improved water supply will increase beneficiary productivity and incomes.
  2. Reducing water-related illnesses (diarrhea, dysentery, etc.). Health improvements resulting from an improved water supply will increase beneficiary productivity and incomes.

By increasing access to improved water, the expectation was that the incidence of diarrhea would decline and women and children, in particular, would spend less time collecting water. Other secondary impacts include improved opportunities for children (especially girls) to attend school and for women to use any time freed from water collection to engage in productive activities.

The following lists provide a summary of the activities that were undertaken during the 2011 and 2013 fieldwork expeditions. In both the baseline (2011) and follow-up (2013) studies, two weeks of enumerator training and a pilot study were undertaken prior to the commencement of the fieldwork.

2011 baseline study in Nampula:

  • 1,579 households surveys were completed in 54 communities (27 treatment and 27 comparison);
  • 54 water committee or leader interviews were completed; and
  • Water sampling was undertaken in 11 communities (from 39 community water sources and 259 household containers).

2013 follow-up study in Nampula:

  • 1,826 households surveys were completed in 62 communities (32 treatment and 30 comparison);
  • 31 water committee or leader interviews were completed;
  • 17 water point observations were undertaken in 17 communities;
  • Water sampling was undertaken in 11 communities (from 32 community water sources and 873 household containers); and
  • Repeated sampling of water sources in four communities (a total of 412 samples) was undertaken to characterize water quality variability.

2013 SSSS study in Cabo Delgado:

  • 8 focus groups with water users;
  • 8 semi-structured interviews with water committees (WC);
  • 6 semi-structured interviews with leaders;
  • 6 semi structured interviews with water operators (OP) (where applicable);
  • 8 technical assessments;
  • 4 water point observations; and
  • 4 reviews of the financial/water use records held by the water committees or operators.

The research results have been captured in two technical reports that were approved by the MCC in April, 2014:

In addition to the technical reports, the research team has presented the key findings from the research at the following two events organized by the MCC:

The in-country partners for this project were:


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