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Past projects

Review of consultancies and projects undertaken by Richard Carter and Associates since 2010. 

Independent evaluation at the Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology (CAWST)


Between June 2017 and June 2018 Richard Carter led a three-person team, with Anthony Waterkeyn and Sue Cavill, in the first evaluation of CAWST's programming. The evaluation synthesised evidence from five country visits, two desk studies and numerous key informant interviews. The evaluation generated ten main recommendations. The management response is awaited, as is wider publication of the findings of the evaluation.

Engineering for Sustainable Development – Development Engineering, with special reference to the water sector.


In the Lent Term (January to March annually) I teach a module in the Cambridge University MPhil course in Engineering for Sustainable Development.  The course was launched in October 2002.  It recruits around 35 to 40 students annually and explores the context in which engineering activity must take place. The module in Development Engineering takes students into the context, objectives, means and outcomes of development interventions in low- and middle-income countries, and the place of engineering in those interventions.  As is appropriate to the course as a whole, a heavy emphasis is placed on outcomes which are both inclusive and sustainable.

UNICEF Global Evaluation of Rural Water Supply Programming


I was one of two external members of the Technical Review Group for UNICEF’s global evaluation of its rural water activities.  This role involved supporting the finalisation of the evaluation terms of reference and the selection of the evaluation team; participating in key meetings; advising on the communication plan for the evaluation; assisting the evaluation team to access UNICEF and non-UNICEF (peer-reviewed and grey) literature and documentation on water services in rural and small town settings; participating in a country mission; reviewing all key deliverables and ensuring that communication products are true to the thrust of the evaluation findings; and advising on the management response to the evaluation.  As part of this work I joined the evaluation team in Zimbabwe in December 2016 and the work was completed in 2018.

Developing Groundwater


The latest course “Developing Groundwater” under the auspices of RedR (Register of Engineers for Disaster Relief), Groundwater Relief (formerly Hydrogeologists without Borders), and a range of other collaborators, took place at Cranfield in May 2018.

Sustainability Framework

Knowledge Management

Having drafted WaterAid's Sustainability Framework in 2011 I have revised the document to take account of subsequent thinking and experience in the sector.

Political Economy of Water Supply in Nigeria

Knowledge Management

I worked with the Overseas Development Institute on a diagnostic analysis for the World Bank to identify and define the key problems and constraints for serving the poorest 40% of the population with rural and urban water services. The work involved a desk based analysis to map the problems, using the key relationships of power set out in the 2004 World Development Report (WDR), Making Services Work for Poor People. This report remains a seminal analysis of the linkages between service delivery outcomes, and the political, governance and accountability factors that can drive good or bad performance, focusing on relationships between citizens / consumers, service providers and policymakers.

Towards sustainable water and sanitation services for all in Madagascar


Peter Ryan and Richard Carter acted as consultants to the Ministry of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Madagascar through a contract to UNICEF.  We have undertaken a considerable amount of fieldwork, analysis and consultation.  This work has clearly shown the extent of the challenges facing this impoverished nation’s WASH sectors.  Our task was to support Government and other players in collaborative efforts to address the sustainability challenge; we have also set out a ‘roadmap’ towards a so-called sector-wide approach – a unified way of working for all players in the sector.  As 2015 ended we were working on four assignments: the second Sustainability Check for the WASH sector; a preliminary evaluation of the costs of sustainable rural water services;  matching of management model to context in rural water; and financial modeling and planning for rural water services. These were completed in 2016.

School WASH in East Africa and South Asia 2015-2016

Knowledge Management

Jen Smith and Richard Carter worked with East Africa and South Asia Regional staff and WaterAid’s Programme Support Unit on a research project examining WASH in schools.  The overall purpose was to guide the individual country office work in the two regions to greater effectiveness in policy advocacy and programme implementation.  The work initially consisted of desk-based reviews and key informant interviews, followed by country research activities in 9 countries across the two regions.

Was Ebola a threat to water resources? 2014-15

Water resources

This was the question which we tried to address in three pieces of work during 2014-15, the period of the largest and longest outbreak of Ebola virus disease yet seen.  The first priority was to design simple guidance for the protection of water resources and the management of wastes at Ebola care facilities.  These documents were published through the Ministry of Water Resources and the Ministry of Health and Sanitation in late 2014.  In early 2015 we undertook a more detailed analysis of existing evidence, through a desk-based project led by the British Geological Survey and funded by DFID.

Sierra Leone Water Security and WASH Learning websites

Knowledge Management

Rosie Carter-Suso and Richard Carter designed the Water Security website ( which publishes reports, maps, data and other information on Water Security in Sierra Leone.  They have also re-designed the WASH Learning website (, which is a documentation and information resource for all WASH sector players in Sierra Leone.  These websites were both officially launched by the Deputy Secretary of the Ministry of Water Resources at a public meeting in Freetown on Friday 29th May 2015.

Securing Water Resources Approach (SWRA), February 2015

Water resources

SWRA is the acronym now used to describe an approach to water security which involves community monitoring and decision-making around local water resources, local Government and national agency technical and governance support, mechanisms for local negotiation and conflict-resolution and enhancements to water supply infrastructure.  In February 2015 a training workshop was undertaken in Bamako, hosted by WaterAid, with participants from Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali and Niger.  Richard Carter, Lucien Damiba and Vincent Casey acted as Trainers.

A Review of Research undertaken in WaterAid’s Southern Africa Region, March 2013–14

Knowledge Management

In 2013 Jen Smith and Richard Carter carried out a review WaterAid’s research activities in its East Africa Region (Ethiopia, Tanzania and Uganda).  This was followed by a short training programme on ‘Research-into-Use’ in the same region in 2014 (for further information see  This work is now continuing with a review of WaterAid’s research in its Southern Africa Region (Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia).

Uganda Drilling Supervision Courses, March 2013 and 2014

Groundwater development

WaterAid has now arranged two courses on the Supervision of Water Supply Borehole Construction.  These have taken place as a collaboration between WaterAid, We-Consult , TGS Water and Richard Carter and Associates Ltd.

Timor Leste Water Security Workshop October 2013

Climate Change and WASH

Richard Carter led a week-long workshop on climate change adaptation and WASH with Local Government and NGO participants supported by WaterAid and CARE.

Malawi ODI DFID Climate Change & WASH Project, July 2013

Climate change and WASH


Working as a consultant to the Overseas Development Institute, and alongside Oxford Policy Management Ltd, Richard Carter contributed to the DFID funded study “Adaptation to Climate Change in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene”. The project published its final report in 2014 and can be downloaded here

Cranfield Drilling Course 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

Groundwater Development

Every year since 1989, Richard Carter has led a hands-on training course for Cranfield University Masters Students exposing them to the practicalities of borehole drilling and construction.  In recent years, we have placed increasing emphasis on the supervision of construction.  In 2015 and 2016 we partnered with RedR, Groundwater Relief and a wider group of contributors to present a combined course to Cranfield’s MSc students together with relief and development workers from a range of aid agencies.

Tanzania Water Sector Development Program, March 2013


In 2013 Richard Carter was a member of a four-person team led by Oxford Policy Management, undertaking an evaluation of Africa’s largest water sector SWAp.  In this team he acted as water resources consultant.  The report is available here:

Nigeria Sustainable Total Sanitation 2012-13


Richard Carter led WaterAid’s team which was successful in winning a multi-million dollar grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for implementation and research on total sanitation in Nigeria.  After he left WaterAid he led one workshop with the National team, and participated in the launch workshop for the programme. He has subsequently handed over responsibilities for this programme to other colleagues in WaterAid.

Uganda Sustainability Assessment February 2013


Together with a colleague from WaterAid’s Uganda programme team, Richard Carter undertook an analysis of the prospects of sustainability of WASH services provided under a community-based management approach.  This work was requested by the programme funders, the EU Water Facility.

Community-based water resources management in East Africa – project planning workshop for WaterAid in Uganda, December 2012

Water resources & water security

This workshop brought together WaterAid staff and some of WaterAid’s partners and collaborators from Uganda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Rwanda and Kenya.  The purpose was to widen awareness of what can be achieved through community level monitoring and management of water resources.  WaterAid’s country teams returned to their countries with concept notes describing activities to be incorporated into their country work plans.  Richard Carter was the lead consultant and his participation in the workshop involved making a number of presentations, facilitating and summing up, and preparing a short concluding paper about the integration of community-based water resources management into water and sanitation programming.

Community-based water resources management in West Africa – project evaluation for WaterAid Burkina Faso, November 2012

Water resources & water security and Evaluation

WaterAid has been running a community-based water resources management project in Burkina Faso since mid- to late-2011.  This evaluation took place after a full year of implementation.  Richard Carter led a team consisting of two members of WaterAid’s Regional Learning Centre on Water Resources, one member of WaterAid’s Burkina Faso programme team, one of WaterAid’s Technical Support Managers, a second independent consultant, and WaterAid’s NGO project implementing partner.

Humanitarian relief project evaluations for Tearfund Afghanistan, September 2012


Tearfund has been working in Jawzjan and Kandahar Provinces for several years, undertaking a variety of humanitarian relief projects targeted at vulnerable households including internally displaced and returnee households.  Richard Carter led evaluations of a drought relief cash-for-work project in Jawzjan and a livelihoods / water supply project in Kandahar.  Security protocols meant that the Kandahar project had to be evaluated remotely with the assistance of a team of Afghan interviewers who were briefed and debriefed each day

Community-based water resources management training in Ethiopia, March 2012

Water resources & water security

Together with a Technical Support Manager from WaterAid, Richard Carter led a workshop for WaterAid staff and colleagues from local government, NGOs and academia on the subject of community-based water resources monitoring and management.  This took place in Konso woreda, where WaterAid has been working for several years to improve water and sanitation services.

Joint Technical Review of WaterAid Tanzania in June 2011


Richard Carter led the first of WaterAid’s Joint Technical Reviews, working with members of the Technical Support Unit and WaterAid’s Tanzania Country Programme team.  Together they reviewed the rural and urban sanitation, hygiene and water supply work of the country programme, as well as the linkages between practice and policy, and the quality of partnerships and capacity development.

Country programme evaluation for WaterAid Uganda, July 2010


As team leader Richard Carter undertook a comprehensive evaluation of WaterAid’s programme in Uganda, making specific recommendations as to how WaterAid’s strategy should evolve in that country.  The team consisted of two colleagues from the WaterAid team in Uganda, an independent Ugandan consultant and a London-based WaterAid Programme Officer.

Mid-term review, sanitation programme, Tanzania in February 2010


As lead consultant, Richard Carter undertook a mid-term review of WaterAid’s rural and urban sanitation work in Tanzania, all of which at the time was funded by Irish Aid.  Working with WaterAid colleagues we examined rural programme activities in Nzega and Iramba Districts and latrine pit-emptying activities in unplanned settlements of Dar es Salaam.

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