This research brief presents the initial findings and lessons learned from a study of the stakeholder relationships and key success factors for the Rural Sanitation and Hygiene (RuSH) Network in Cambodia. The Royal Government of Cambodia’s National Strategy for Rural Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene 2011-2025 has set a clear but ambitious sector vision: “Every person in rural communities has access to safe water supply and sanitation services and lives in a hygienic environment by 2025.” However, the RuSH subsector in Cambodia faces significant challenges to achieving that vision. It is composed of a crowded field of stakeholders; the National Action Plan notes that it is uncoordinated and disjointed; and the outcomes of conventional interventions suffer from low sustainability. Current coordination efforts tend to involve a core group of NGOs and government, without significant engagement of the private sector or many other traditional actors in the sector.
To address this, Cambodian NGO WaterSHED, in collaboration with LINC, is facilitating a locally-led, locally-owned systems approach to engage RuSH stakeholders at the national level in a highly structured collaborative effort. LINC led a baseline analysis of the actors working on RuSH issues. (This informal group is referred to as the RuSH Network). The objective of this study was to support the RuSH Network to generate common understanding, discussion and coordinated actions that will accelerate progress toward the sector vision. The analysis explores relationships in the RuSH Network and the inter-relationship of various success factors and barriers to achieving the sector vision.