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Gather uses data to transform city sanitation


The Sanitation Data Commission

Gather is preparing to launch an independent commission as part of our response to bridge the sanitation data gap.

The Sanitation Data Commission will advise on the creation of a new global data standard for the location, type of toilet and volume of waste. Data standards are important. In order to share, exchange and understand data, we must standardise the format as well as the meaning.  A data standard for urban sanitation data will empower local decision makers to better understand the problems in their cities, advocate for investment and track progress to achieving sanitation for all.


Sanitation organisations collect a lot of data but are not recording the location, type of toilet or the amount of waste that they collect in the same way. As a result, no one can create a baseline with information on toilet services from a variety of resources. This has led to huge duplication. Too often, the same areas have been surveyed and the same data collected repeatedly in slight different ways. This is unsustainable and wasteful in a sector with already limited resources.


Commissioners will be appointed from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences. Each commissioner will be an expert in geospatial data, analytical research, technology or urban sanitation. The Commission will be global in perspective and local in application.


The Commission will hold six meetings over eighteen months. This will include two two-day summits held in London, UK and four three-hour virtual meetings.

The Commission will produce an interim report after nine months and a full report after eighteen months. The recommendations for a data standard will be piloted in Antananarivo, Madagascar before replication in other emerging cities. The Commission will make public the success, challenges and learnings in keeping with the Nakuru Accord. All information will be published at www.sanitationdatacommission.org.

Play your part

The Commission’s secretariat will be hosted by Gather and information.

Please complete the expression of interest below if you are interested in joining the commission or nominating a commissioner.


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