Ensuring sustainable services
for a developing world
Our mission is to provide support to public, private and third sector organisations to improve the delivery of sustainable basic services for marginalised people in the global south.
We are a young, dynamic UK-based consulting company with experience across a range of sectors with a multi-cultural and multi-lingual mix of staff and associates. We provide a range of advisory services around the world with a geographic reach across Africa, Latin America and Asia.
We work in collaborative partnership with a range of clients and focus on water supply, sanitation and hygiene services, as well as related aspects including policy reform, financing, decentralization, urban planning and environmental health.
We are business-like and deliver high quality and on-time advisory services that add value to our clients’ work and maximises impact on the lives of millions.
We are independent and always look to challenge the status quo, pushing for changes that can unlock new approaches and solutions.
We know that the challenges facing marginalised people are often complex and that finding feasible solutions calls for flexibility and responsiveness.
We have on the ground, real-world experience ensuring that our team can give voice to many differing perspectives and deliver advice that is both inspired and realistic to implement.
We share our passion for what we do and, working as a team together with our clients, we always seek positive ways of moving forward.
We believe in what we do and strive to make a difference; our team is committed to delivering a social good and we work with clients that share these values.
We thrive in the knowledge economy and deliver relevant and accessible knowledge products that can inspire, educate and bring about change.
A brilliant idea that is poorly communicated, or that does into take into account needs of an audience at which it is aimed, at can fall short of the mark in terms of its potential for impact. Not all people, groups of people or organisations take in information or learn in the same way. We know from experience that knowledge products need to be well designed and tailored to end users. Although content and broad messaging may be the same, the language and level of detail required for technocrats will be very different to that which appeals to policy makers. The media and general public require a different level of communication again. And communication of the best ideas is often done through images and other graphical representations, not only relying on a narrative. We have the experience and track-record to draw on in making complex ideas and concepts accessible.
MONITORING & EVALUATION
We regularly conduct participatory evaluations and have developed both qualitative and quantitative approaches to monitoring progress, outcomes and impact.
The old adage “you can’t manage what you don’t measure” is as true today as it ever was. But in the complex and messy reality of basic service provision, assessing progress is often goes beyond only simple counting of outputs or other metrics. Interventions having potential for the greatest transformational change often are the most difficult to measure, whether this is in terms of accountability, policy change or shifts in behaviours. Aguaconsult has experience of monitoring and evaluating these types of complex change processes and, most importantly, of using the outputs of monitoring to trigger dialogue and discussions around improvements to on-going programmes of intervention or support. Whether at the individual programme level or in terms of national sector processes, we have the tools and experience to monitor and the know-how to use the resultant information to help bring about positive change.
TRAINING & FACILITATION
We empower professionals with new knowledge and tools and have years of experience in delivering high-quality learning events from global to local levels.
Great ideas and new concepts are often only as good as the messenger and successful communication is at the heart of developing capacity and disseminating new practice. Such skills and new knowledge are often best transmitted face to face and in the context of training sessions or in larger convenings of practitioners and policy makers. At Aguaconsult we have a long track-record of designing and delivering bespoke training courses and in the management and facilitation of both large-scale conferences and smaller learning events. We have managed multi-day events with several hundred participants from all over world, all the way to putting on very bespoke events with a focus on specific client requirements and objectives. Adult learning relies on well designed events that bring out the best in participants and act as a catalyst for them to reflect on their own experiences and the content of their everyday work. Maximum participation and contextualisation of training materials are key principles for us in preparing for training events.
We combine the latest thinking across a range of professional disciplines with on the ground, real-world experience ensuring that our advice is relevant, effective and achieves results.
We recognise that the context in which basic services are delivered is often complex, messy and relies on many different elements being in place from the right technology to reliable long-term financing. Equally we understand that in many countries this ideal is not the case and that different actors often struggle to cope with inadequate resources and lack of clarity about roles and responsibilities. From our extensive experience across a range of countries we know that technical support must be appropriately targeted and realistic to execute. We have experience in working with – and valuing - the vertical hierarchy of stakeholders from national level ministry and regulators to local private operators and household consumers. We understand and account for these realities and differing perspectives and are able to tailor our technical assistance to be the most relevant and effective possible.
RESEARCH & DESIGN
We conduct research into policy, service delivery and organizational change processes, bringing new insights that can help deliver lasting impact and benefit to the poor and under-served.
Bringing effective service delivery to most marginalised populations often requires new insights into key bottlenecks and a better understanding of incentives and opportunities that can overcome these constraints. In many if not most cases these go beyond the technical challenges of physical infrastructure provision and touch upon the need for adequate (public) finance and subsidy mechanisms, regulation and effective service providers. Aguaconsult has experience of carrying out such research, including a number of WASH related sustainability assessments, policy uptake and looking at organisational change processes and decentralisation across various branches of government. We bring this knowledge and insights into the design of new donor-led programmes and support to governments in the development of new investment programmes.