Welcome to Gather

Gather uses data to transform city sanitation


The Sanitation Data Commission

Gather’s sanitation data commission will set a new global standard so that insight can be turned into action.

The problem

The global sanitation sector collects a lot of data, but each organisation collects this data in very different ways with different indicators, techniques and definitions. As a result, it has been impossible to bring data together from a variety of resources to create a baseline that sanitation providers and funders can take action from. The lack of data interoperability across the sector has led to huge duplication of effort with limited results. Too often, the same areas have been surveyed and the same, low quality data has been collected repeatedly in slightly different ways. This is unsustainable and wasteful in a sector with already limited resources.


The Commission will advise on the creation of a new open data standard for the location, type of sanitation infrastructure and volume of waste. By transforming global data practices, we can help to maximise the impact of local efforts by turning data into insight, enabling collaborative action.

World map with with pinpoints in fifteen emerging cities across South America, Africa and South and South East Asia.

World map with with pinpoints in fifteen emerging cities across South America, Africa and South and South East Asia.



Ten Commissioners will be appointed from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences. Their expertise will include geospatial data, analytical research, technology or urban sanitation.


The Commission’s Terms of Reference and recruitment process will be made public in June 2019, and its recommendations will be published online.

 The Commission will hold six meetings over eighteen months. This will include two-day summits held in London, UK and virtual meetings. Sanitation organisations will be invited to participate in a global survey of data practices, and early adopters and Sanitation Data Hub members will test the new data standard. 

 The Commission’s work on data standardisation will complement the work of organisations like the Joint Monitoring Programme.

The Commission will produce an interim report after nine months and a full report after eighteen months. All information will be published at www.sanitationdatacommission.org.

Play your part

Gather is the lead organistion and secretariat for the Commision. Please complete the expression of interest below if you are interested in joining the commission or nominating a commissioner.


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