While preventive maintenance services have emerged as promising interventions to improve the continuity of water service delivery, the operational and contextual requirements for sustained functionality within maintenance models are not well understood. This paper uses data analysis to better understand factors influencing the success of rural water service delivery within the circuit rider maintenance model in fragile contexts. Incorporating operational data from a large scale circuit rider hand-pump maintenance program in the Central African Republic, mixed-effect logistic regression models were used to identify determinants of water point functionality and payment compliance. Models were informed by data from over 16,000 maintenance visits across nine years. Faster response time, proximity to urban centers, and proximity to other hand-pumps emerged as significant factors for improving water point functionality, while proximity to maintenance program headquarters, pump functionality, and frequency of maintenance visits significantly influenced payment compliance. The observed high functionality rates of hand-pumps serviced by the maintenance program indicates the potential benefits of professionalized maintenance through the circuit rider model at promoting water system reliability in fragile contexts. Despite adaptability and resilience in implementation of the circuit rider model, insecurity and conflict remain barriers to sustaining service delivery in the Central African Republic.
Fink, E. L., Chintalapati, P., Lane, A., Wester, A., Javernick-Will, A., & Linden, K. (2022). Determinants of rural hand-pump functionality through maintenance provision in the Central African Republic. PLOS Water, 1(6), e0000024.