PUP in Huancayo, Peru

After the plans for privatisation in Huancayo were shelved, efforts to develop progressive public water reforms instead intensified. An agreement was first reached between the trade unions SUTAPAH and SOSBA, followed by an agreement between the utilities SEDAM and ABSA. The final step was to ensure agreement on the level of the provincial governments of Huancayo and Buenos Aires. This third level is crucial to ensure that everyone involved assists with implementing the agreement. Getting the workers involved in the management of a public utility helps to ensure permanent planning and care. Participation by the users and civil society helps guarantee an appropriate administration. Luis Mario Padron is Technical Assistant Manager at '5 de Septiembre S.A', the drinking and wastewater operator of the Buenos Aires province, Argentina. '5 de Septiembre S.A.' is the workers-run company operating the provincial utility Aguas Bonaerenses S.A. (ABSA), established by the union of water workers of Buenos Aires, SOSBA.

Huancayo (Peru): From Resistance to PUPs

The Andean city of Huancayo has shown that a strong local movement of citizens and workers can expand the struggle against privatisation into reclaiming public water services. In Huancayo, water movements have developed an innovative public-public partnership (PUP) as an alternative to privatisation. The social movement organisation FREDEAJUN (Frente de Defensa del Agua de la Region Junín) successfully resisted privatisation and, in a participatory bottom-up process, developed an alternative proposal to reform the public utility SEDAM Huancayo S. A. FREDEAJUN and one of its members, the local sector trade union SUTAPAH (Sindicato Único de Trabajadores de Agua Potable de Huancayo) also successfully established a public-public-partnership between SEDAM and ABSA (Aguas Bonaerenses S.A), a union-owned and run public water operator in the state of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Nonrevenue Water Management Training Course

The Nonrevenue Water Management Training Course aims to build water utility capacity at top and middle management to deal with nonrevenue water reduction. This is the first of the three-part course. The 5-day course on Nonrevenue Water (NRW) Management, co-organized by ADB, Southeast Asian Water Utilities Network, South Asian Water Utilities Network, and World Bank Institute, offered a systematic program for water utilities to gain knowledge and skills in NRW reduction. This was the first of three courses supported by ADB’s Water Operators’ Partnerships (WOPs) Program. Around 70 member utilities from SAWUN and SEAWUN from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Philippines, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Viet Nam participated in this first session. The participants belonged to top and middle management levels to ensure a higher probability that NRW reduction best practices and internationally accepted methodology will be replicated. The NRW course adopts a programmatic approach, with participants expected to attend succeeding, more intensive, workshops. They were given assignments to put theories into practice in their respective utilities. Submission of these assignments is required before they can participate in the second course. On the whole, the course aimed to -- complete an NRW Self Assessment Matrix (SAM) for each utility; prepare short and medium term targets as a basis for detailed action planning in the following courses; develop a community of practice that will provide the foundation for information exchange amongst participating utilities, with the end view of overcoming difficulties and share experiences. The course was facilitated by Mr. Roland Liemberger, a specialist on water loss assessment and loss reduction strategies. The participants learned how to -- establish a standardized water balance; calculate water loss performance indicators to reduce commercial and physical losses; formulate a NRW Assessment and Management Action Plan.

CASCWUA Continuous Improvement and Benchmarking

Central Asia and South Caucasus Water Utilities Association (CASCWUA) is a new organization of water utilities committed to improving its members' performance in the delivery of water services. These utilities are taking progressive action to tackle the widespread problems with inadequate drinking water and sanitation for the millions of poor people in the region. As an initial undertaking, CASCWUA is embarking on a benchmarking and continuous improvement program that aims to improve the key performance indicators of its member utilities.

Indicators for national water sector apex bodies (NWSAB)

Suggests indicators for national water sector apex bodies (NWSAB) vis a mandated, active and effective NWSAB: (1) Mandated – Institutional arrangements (clear mandate, organizational structure vis other agencies/depts). (2) Active – Internal processes (frequency of meetings, attendance of actual members, active participation of members, policy review functions). (3) Effective – resource management, service delivery, RBOs/river basin organizations, policy dialogue & stakeholder participation.

Continuous Improvement and Benchmarking (WOPs Program)

Continuous Improvement and Benchmarking (CIB) involves collecting, analyzing, and comparing key performance data of water and sanitation utilities and, on the basis of analysis, developing a strategy and work program to improve specific aspects of a utility’s performance. This program seeks to help utilities establish internal processes and build skilled teams to collect, analyze, and measure their services and then compare their performance and service practices against those of other utilities.

Apex Bodies Training on Performance Benchmarking

ADB conducted a training session on performance benchmarking for National Water Sector Apex Bodies as part of its continued commitment to provide technical assistance for apex bodies' capacity building. The training introduced participants to ADB's water policy and apex bodies' role in meeting the policy's objective. It also presented the Assessment Tool and Peer Review Mechanics and Procedures for simulation exercises and pilot testing. ADB regards national water sector apex bodies as critical institutions to improve decision-making for better water governance. National Water Sector Apex Bodies have been established in several countries in Asia to guide national water sector reforms. The Philippines first pilot tested program in October 2005 and Thailand's National Water Resources Committee next. Malaysia's turn in April 2006.

IBNET toolkit

The purpose of benchmarking is to search for and identify best practice in whatever sector with the objective of implementing appropriate best practice and improving performance. Collection of data is not benchmarking, but is an integral step in the benchmarking path to improved performance. The IBNET toolkit is a set of documents and electronic tables that are facilitating the benchmarking process in your water utility. It consists of an explanatory note, instructions with data and indicator definitions, and a data collection and indicator calculation spreadsheet. IBNET provides a means and a set of tools for water and sanitation utilities to develop national or regional groupings for the purpose of undertaking regular benchmarking activities. IBNET provides the opportunity for these local benchmarking initiatives to undertake international comparisons by making available easy to use search and query features. IBNET supports and promotes good benchmarking practice among water and sanitation services worldwide, by: Providing guidance on indicators, definitions and methods of collecting data; Providing guidance on setting up national or regional benchmarking schemes; Enabling utilities to undertake peer group performance comparisons; Facilitating access to water utility performance data in the public domain.

SAWUN Continuous Improvement and Benchmarking (CIB)

In Asia, some of the ongoing programs in water utilities benchmarking are the benchmarking of water utilities in India and the ongoing second phase of the South East Asian Water Utilities Network’s (SEAWUN) benchmarking program. Another regional network of water utilities, the recently launched South Asian Water Utilities Network (SAWUN), is about to embark on its own benchmarking program. SAWUN’s vision is to measurably improve the delivery of water supply and sanitation services in the region. In July 2007, it finalized and approved its two-year business plan, which focuses on 3 themes—nonrevenue water, tariff setting, and connecting the urban poor. Among the key activities under the business plan is the conduct of a “benchmarking and continuous improvement program” for its members. This workshop introduced SAWUN member utilities to performance benchmarking as applied to one of SAWUN’s 3 themes: nonrevenue water. It helped participating water utilities to -- Understand the performance benchmarking process; Identify common key performance indicators; Generate and compare solutions to major performance challenges; Recommend a range of activities to improve specific aspects of the utilities’ operations.

Benchmarking and Water Utilities Data Book for India

When the Government of India formally launched the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) in 2005, Asian Development Bank (ADB) committed to support it with a US$2 million technical assistance grant. One initiative identified is a benchmarking program for 30 selected water utilities in India. This benchmarking program will be supervised by the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) and supported by ADB. Data collected from the project will feed into the JNNURM and enable utilities to better access MoUD assistance.

South Asian Water Utilities Network (SAWUN)

The South Asian Water Utilities Network (SAWUN) is a new organization of water utilities in South Asia whose vision is to measurably improve its members’ performance in the delivery of water supply and sanitation services. With ADB’s support, SAWUN was established in April 2007 at a conference in Islamabad, Pakistan. SAWUN is committed to becoming a self-sustaining organization that proactively responds to its members’ needs and demonstrates excellence in delivering its programs and practices.

SEAWUN Continuous Improvement and Benchmarking (CIB)

The South East Asian Water Utilities Network launched its benchmarking program in 2004-2005 to help improve the performance of its member utilities. One of the major outputs of this first phase was the SEAWUN Data Book of Southeast Asian Water Utilities. In 2006-2007, SEAWUN worked on the second phase of its benchmarking program, which involves not just the expansion of participating utilities but also the pilot testing of process benchmarking through peer review.

Data Book of Southeast Asian Water Utilities 2005

The Data Book for Southeast Asian Water Utilities 2005 follows the earlier data book with 2003 data published by the Southeast Asian Water Utilities Network (SEAWUN) with support from the Asian Development Bank. It is part of their common objectives of helping water utilities in the region to assess their performance that could lead to efforts in improving their level of performance. The indicators derived from data provided by the participating utilities when analyzed are useful tools for setting performance improvement goals and for monitoring the attainment of these goals.

SEAWUN Benchmarking Survey for 2003 ‘Data Book’

In 2004, with the encouragement and financial support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the South East Asian Water Utilities Network (SEAWUN) launched its Performance Benchmarking Program for water utilities in South East Asian region. This inaugural Program involved the participation of 47 utilities from 7 regional countries, namely Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam. In addition to the support of national water associations and various stakeholders, participating utilities made vigorous efforts during the process of completing survey questionnaire.

SEAWUN Performance Benchmarking Program

Southeast Asian Water Utilities Network (SEAWUN) is working on its second phase, which involves not just the expansion of participating utilities but also the pilot testing of process benchmarking through peer review. Benchmarking of water supply utilities is now common practice worldwide. It involves collection, analysis and comparison of key performance data between water utilities in a country, a region and worldwide. Water utilities participating in the exercise can assess their performance, identify strong and weak points, and develop timely solutions to their problems.

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