Seasonal Water Insecurity in Urban Philippines: Examining the Role of Gender, Resources, and Context

Citation:

Mason, Lisa Reyes. 2013. “Seasonal Water Insecurity in Urban Philippines: Examining the Role of Gender, Resources, and Context.” PhD diss., Washington University in St. Louis.

Author: Lisa Reyes Mason

Abstract:

Seasonal water insecurity is a complex problem of growing concern in many urban areas, due in part to urbanization, population growth, and environmental change. Using multiple research methods, this study documents the extent and nature of seasonal water insecurity among and within households in an urban neighborhood in Baguio City, the Philippines. This study also examines how individual and household factors--gender and financial, physical, and social resources--and contextual factors may relate to water insecurity by season. Data collection methods include archival research, informal interviews, randomly-sampled household surveys: N=396), randomly-sampled individual subsurveys: N=291), and in-depth interviews: N=18).
 
This study conceptualizes and measures water insecurity along three dimensions: quantity, quality, and accessibility of water for everyday household and individual use. Key findings are that water insecurity varies widely among households in the study neighborhood, and to some extent, within households. These differences are more pronounced in the dry than rainy season. Household financial and physical resources are associated with some dimensions of water insecurity, also with seasonal variation. In general, quantitative methods in this study find few associations between water insecurity and gender or household social resources; relationships among these variables are found, however, using qualitative methods. Neighborhood and municipal factors such as geography, water utility characteristics, and population and environment trends are discussed.
 
This study contributes an important documentation of the heterogeneities in water insecurity that exist among a population and which are often masked by municipal, regional, and national statistics. Study findings also have implications for programs and policies designed to bolster the factors associated with reduced water insecurity by season--in urban areas of the Philippines, and in other countries expecting to experience seasonal water insecurity for the first time or to a greater extent than in the past.

Topics: Development, Environment, Gender, Governance, Households, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Philippines

Year: 2013

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