Gender and social outcomes of WASH interventions: synthesis of research evidence

Programme of work

Evaluating complex interventions

Principal investigator(s)

Biljana Macura

Host institution

Stockholm Environment Institute Sweden

Other institutions

Stockholm Environment Institute Africa


April 2020 to Sept 2021 (TBC)

Project type

Evidence synthesis


Low- and middle-income countries

Research question

This study aims to synthesise evidence on gender and social equality components in complex water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) interventions, and to advance evaluation practices in the WASH sector by providing methodological advice on how to include and assess gender and social equality (GSE) outcomes. The main review questions are as follows:

  1. What is the impact of complex WASH interventions on GSE outcomes in LMICs?
  2. What are barriers to or facilitators of change in these outcomes?
  3. What are the knowledge gaps within this subject?
  4. What are methodological deficiencies and the best practices in relevant primary research?

Research design

The study team will carry out a comprehensive mapping of WASH actors and major organisations that work in the WASH implementation and funding space.

They will carry out a mixed-method systematic review to synthesise the best available evidence. They will develop accessible evidence summaries supported by infographics for capacity building, knowledge sharing and enhanced use of evidence in policymaking.

Data source

Stakeholder discussions and systematic review of literature in English and Spanish.

Policy relevance

The study will generate evidence that can help policymakers and practitioners better understand how the design of WASH interventions may affect outcomes related to GSE.