Many water operators in developing countries face serious knowledge and capacity-related challenges that lead to poor service delivery. Water Operator Partnerships (WOPs) are used as a mechanism to strengthen the capacity of water operators for improved performance, by transferring new knowledge from mentoring water operators to mentee water operators.
This study investigates knowledge management (KM) processes of water operators and the factors influencing these processes. A secondary objective explores the extent to which water operators implement KM processes depending on their role in WOPs (i.e., mentor, mentee or both) and their degree of readiness to do so.
The study uses a qualitative case study approach, analysing nine water operators involved in WOPs, these include:
- National Water and Sewerage Corporation (Uganda)
- Tanga Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Authority (Tanzania)
- Kisumu Water and Sanitation Company (Kenya)
- National Office for Potable Water and Electricity (Morocco)
- Vitens Evides International (Netherlands)
- World Waternet (Netherlands)
- Dunea International (Netherlands)
- Interdépartemental pour l’Assainissement de l’Agglomération Parisienne (France)
- The Environmental Sanitation Company of Federal District (Brazil)
The diverse range of cases encompasses public and private water utilities varying in size and age. Additionally, the selected operators play and have played different roles in WOPs (i.e., as mentor, mentee, or both). This variety of characteristics provided the opportunity to examine the reality of KM in water operators in different contexts.