Professor Nagpal of Johns Hopkins University says: "WASHcost breaks down the long-term costs associated with sustainable provision in an easy-to understand manner"
Updated - Sunday 27 January 2013
Professor Tanvi Nagpal teaches the Graduate Seminar: Delivering services in developing countries at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University. She uses WASHCost to help her students understand the long-term costs associated with sustainable service delivery.
Professor Nagpal said:
"We use the WASHCost approach to critically understand the shortcomings in service from a long-term budgeting perspective. In my experience, students come away with two very valuable lessons: First, WASHcost breaks down the long-term costs associated with sustainable provision in an easy-to understand manner. This means that when they plan budgets in class they take into account not just upfront capital costs and some operation and maintenance estimates but also critical repair and replacement costs, the costs of capital and software that have been neglected in the past.
Just the process of thinking through these long-term costs often changes how they plan their programs and what levels of service they anticipate providing. Second, because we focus on delivering services and not goods, students begin to examine different characteristics associated with good service delivery—reliability, affordability, and convenience—in a very serious way. In class, we always stress benchmarking against these characteristics. This not only allows us to understand where we are and where we want to be, but because we talk about trade-offs and costs, it also helps to grapple with the real world of second-best solutions."