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2013-11-26 | Peer Reviewed

Public perceptions of the performance of community-based drinking water organizations in Costa Rica

Madrigal, Róger, Francisco Alpízar and Schlüter Achim. 2013. “Public perceptions of the performance of community-based drinking water organizations in Costa Rica.” Water Resources and Rural Development 1-2: 43-56.
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This paper analyses the underlying factors affecting people’s satisfaction with drinking water provided by community-based organizations in rural Costa Rica. These organizations provide water to more than 60% of the country’s rural population, but there is great disparity in the quality of water provided.

Using a Generalized Ordered Logit regression and data from 41 villages, we studied how characteristics of the water supply infrastructure, the governance structure, and the attributes of local people affect consumers’ perception of water quality at home.

We found that size of the infrastructure, downward accountability mechanisms, public disclosure of information, demand responsiveness, as well as the human capital of the members of the local water committee, are the main predictors of the capacity of local organizations to satisfy consumer’s preferences on water quality in rural settings.