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Public Private Partnerships (PPP) for Sustainable Development

  • Background

The PPP-ISWM initiative is a 4 year programme implemented by the UNDP Public-Private Partnerships for Service Delivery (PPPSD) in partnership with the Dutch NGO WASTE Advisers on Urban Environment and Development of Gouda, the Netherlands. It is supported by the Netherlands Government through its Department of International Cooperation (DGIS) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The main objective of the programme is to promote sustainable, self-supporting partnerships between micro and small enterprises and local authorities that over time improve lives and livelihoods of poor people in cities and municipalities of low-income countries. The mechanism is to support the formation and operation of new enterprise-municipal co-operation in solid waste management and recycling systems. The programme is specifically formulated to contribute in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), notably goals 1 and 7 (targets 9, 10 and 11) through supporting multi-stakeholders public-private partnerships (PPP) with the methodology of Integrated Sustainable Waste Management (ISWM).  

The partnership draws from the years of experience of UNDP PPPSD on local level public-private partnerships and WASTE on the ISWM methodology to bring synergy from the strengths and comparative advantages of each of the partners and their respective networks of development practitioners.


  •  Programme Goals and Strategy

The main goal of the programme is to stimulate improved cooperation between public, private and civil society actors that: contributes to sustainable improvement of recycling and solid waste management; minimizes negative effects of waste in poor communities; amd improves the lives and livelihoods of people and enterprises in cities in poor countries.

Some indicative environmental impacts include:

- Reduction of plastic and other types of litter in watercourses in 5 to 10 communities and their host municipalities resulting to improved local public health profile.

- Significant quantities of waste are kept out of landfills, dumps and open spaces and diverted to economically valuable end uses and therefore turning environmental hazards into sustainable business opportunities for the poor.

- Ground water pollution resulting from poor management of solid waste is reduced and contributing to improved water quality in participating cities.

- Assuming up to live solid waste service projects, the overall city solid waste management system in each of those will improve, serve more households, become more cost-effective, reach a higher level of performance standards and create job opportunities for the poor women and marginalized groups.


  • Partne rships on Solid Waste Management. Who are we?

UNDPUNDP    logo Public-Private Partnerships for Service Delivery (PPPSD)                         

 The PPPSD is a UNDP multi-donor initiative that developing countries use to obtain support in their efforts to define,   promot  e and implement Public-Private Partnerships to improve service delivery and reduce poverty a t the local level. It  offers a fl exible portfolio of demand driven services built on the basis of a  strong partner and UNDP Country Offices networks and results at the country level. In this context, PPPSD has a comparative advantage as it has strong access to governments (national and local), and “upstream linkage” to national, regional and local authorities, para-statal organizations, private sector, civil society organizations, and multilateral development partners.

WASTE advisers on urban environment and development

WASTE is a NGO under the Dutch law and a civil society organization that functions as a knowledge institution. Its primary constituency is the small, micro and informal waste, recycling and sanitation actors in developing countries. WASTE works with a robust network of local experts, NGOs and private companies with varied and deep experience on solid waste and recycling, and linkages to poverty reduction and sustainable local development. It has a long experience working with local partners at grassroots and community levels, and is deeply rooted in communities and cities where it has structural partnerships. The strategy for improving sustainable solid waste management is to co-finance and support proposals for well-designed solid waste and recycling partnership initiatives using the PPP approach in selected municipalities.

The programme is designed to deliver new insights in relation to facilitating, structuring and supporting sustainable pro-poor PPPs, something that has proven elusive in the past, but is essential to the larger ambitions of reaching the MDGs through large-scale engagement of local and international private sector.


  •  The Approach

PPPSD’s strong engagement at country level with government counterparts and local actors through the UNDP Country Offices enables the initiative to have clear upstream linkages. PPPSD provides policy advisory and capacity intervention on establishing enabling environment: legal, regulatory, policy and institutional framework and capacity development. its wide network of academic institutions and practitioners provides knowledge and partnership support from regional and global level.  

WASTE and its partners from the Association of South and North Organizations (SURCO) provide the partnerships with horizontal and downward linkages. In summary, this programme to support public-private partnerships itself represents such a partnership, and the learning in the field will thus be internalized within the programme itself.

PPP-ISWM programme is based on the synergy achieved by combining the multi-stakeholder partnership partners between the public sector and a broad range of non-state actors (formal and informal businesses, NGOs, community based organizations), with WASTE’s long term focus on working on the ground with small and informal waste collection and recycling and sanitation private sector and civil society in developing countries.

The PPP-ISWM programme design is partially based on the information gathered in a feasibility phase financed by DGIS in 2003. The analysis of the experiences of a number of PPPs in solid waste management and recycling over the past ten years have given relevant lessons learned showing that PPP in relation to waste management can succeed when programme design and management consider some key pre-requisites:

- Existence of conducive policy, regulatory and institutional frameworks for PPP.
- Capacity development interventions derived from capacity assessments findings.
- Transparent, participatory and accountable mechanisms for planning and implementation.
- Existence of a specific host municipality that has demonstrable, broadly-based need and demand for improved solid waste management and recycling performance.
-  Partnerships actively supported by range of local stakeholders including government both at national and local levels, private sector and civil society.
- The local authority has to support the initiative, and commit to incorporating its results in their solid waste plans and policies.
- The geographical focus of the programme largely follows the PPPSD approach, with country initiatives being implemented in UNDP country programmes through UNDP Country Offices in the Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean regions.

  • Expexted Results and Impacts

Currently, PPP-ISWM initiatives are currently running in 6 pilot local areas in 6 countries to put in place sustainable, equitable, affordable waste management fully tapping into local resources and capacities.

Concrete results of the PPP-ISWM programme are:
- In 6 local areas there will be cleaner streets and healthier environments.
- Households, and specifically adult women in these households, will have become active users or providers of modernised solid waste management systems.
- An important number of community members, with emphasis on women community leaders, will participate in planning activities through solid waste platforms, identifying and lobbying for appropriate service levels affordable to them, and monitoring performance of their city government and solid waste service providers.
- Between 150 and 1,000 informal and formal sector individuals will have improved working conditions and capacities, more robust and regular incomes including better social safety net for their households.
- Representatives of 6 local authorities, 5 to 30 civil society organizations and NGOs and 5 to 10 private actors will have a higher level of sectoral, policy formulation and governance capacities and knowledge on PPP for ISWM.


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