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Submitted by Joe on

I am not an economist (or any kind of social scientist), so I'm just throwing this out as an idea: is it possible that people are refusing to co-operate because they perceive that what they are offered is not 'as good as' the thing that they want? I read a study a while ago regarding dry toilets installed in a development in South Africa, and because residents perceived non-flush toilets as somehow inferior rebelled. In the end the developer had to install flush toilets.

I'm not saying this happens everywhere, but it strikes me that there is a potential shame attached to having an 'inferior' sanitation improvement to the extent that it is potentially/actually better to retain a condition of non-santiation (open defecation) 'defiance' on the basis that if one refuses the first bad intervention, eventually someone might come along in the future and offer you what you really want - and you might think (erroneously or otherwise) that accepting an inferior improvement might actually reduce the chances of getting the 'real' santiation improvement that you want, because the funders might think that having *some* kind of improved sanitation takes you out of contention for the next/future round of provision.