BBL | Gender & Social Inclusion in Strategic Social Accountability Approaches: Lessons from the Water Sector in Tajikistan

January 26, 2017

Gender & Social Inclusion in Strategic Social Accountability Approaches: Lessons from the Water Sector in Tajikistan

12:30-2:00PM (EST) | 1818 H St, NW | MC C2-131

Download the Presentation

Introductory Remarks
Asmeen Khan
Practice Manager, Governance Global Practice, World Bank

Maitreyi Das
 Global Lead for Social Inclusion, Water Global Practice, World Bank

Madina Aliberdieva 
Former Deputy Country Director, Oxfam Tajikistan

Paul Prettitore
Senior Public Specialist, Governance Global Practice, World Bank 

Inka Schomer
Operations Officer, Gender Cross-Cutting Solutions Area, World Bank 

In the last decade, the Government of Tajikistan has taken steps to improve water supply and sanitation, but problems persist with regard to access to service, uneven water quality and frequent service interruptions. Since 2014, Oxfam Tajikistan and the Consumer Union of Tajikistan, supported by a GPSA grant, have been operating the TWISA project in five districts of the country and the capital city of Dushanbe, working to strengthen the capacity of citizens to develop performance standards and indicators, as well as monitor service provision and engage with service providers in order to improve transparency and accountability. 

Given that problems with WSS often have a disproportionate effect on women, their meaningful participation is emphasized throughout this process. The project mainstreamed a gender focus through specific interventions such as the collective analysis of local water provision issues through gender lenses, and public sensitization on the importance of women’s participation in social accountability activities in the target districts. The project takes into account potential barriers such as the severe household work burdens faced by women and restrictive social and cultural norms preventing women’s participation, and worked towards improving gender relations. This BBL will focus on lessons learned from the process to date, and explore additional insights from other projects that have tried to address the same challenges using recommendations given by the Water Global Practice Gender Toolkit. 


Asmeen Khan is currently Practice Manager, Strategy and Operations, in the Governance Global Practice. Asmeen has worked for over 25 years on topics related to local governance, decentralization, social accountability, community driven development in South and East Asia, based in the Thailand, India and Indonesia Field Offices. Prior to joining the Bank, Asmeen worked for the Ford Foundation and Oxfam.

Maitreyi Das is the World Bank's Global Lead for Social Inclusion and Lead Social Development Specialist in Water Global Practice.  Based in Washington DC, she works on issues of inequality and exclusion and on the design and implementation of social policy and programs. Among other publications, Maitreyi is also the lead author of the 2013 report, "Inclusion Matters: The Foundation for Shared Prosperity"​ and most recently of "Scaling the Heights: Social Inclusion and Sustainable Development in Himachal Pradesh"​. She started her career as a lecturer in St Stephen's College, University of Delhi, has been a MacArthur Fellow at the Harvard Center of Population and Development Studies and worked as advisor to the United Nations Development Program. She has a PhD in Sociology (Demography) from the University of Maryland. Before joining the World Bank, Maitreyi was in the Indian Administrative Service (IAS).

Madina Aliberdieva is currently an international consultant and  practitioner. Her area of specialization includes leading design, development and delivery of initiatives on governance of essential public service delivery in transition states and societies.   In the past Madina served as   Deputy Country Director with Oxfam, also spearheading the Tajikistan Water Sector Improving Accountability (TWISA) project, which focused on consumer led feedback for effective WSS service provision. She has over 15 years of experience in private sector, development and humanitarian assistance sectors, working in North America, Eastern Europe, Central and South Asia. Madina began her career in refugee crisis management, humanitarian response and DRR, and has worked with FOCUS, an affiliate of the Aga Khan Development Network. She received her MSc. degree in International Development and Rural Extension Studies, from University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada in 2002.

Paul Prettitore is a Senior Public Specialist in the Governance Global Practice and a Focal Point to the Gender Cross Cutting Solutions Area.  His primary areas of engagement are on the issues of good governance, justice sector reform, inclusive institutions, land governance and the intersections of governance, gender and poverty.  Prior to joining the Bank, he was a Human Rights Advisor at the Office of the High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina.  Paul holds a J.D., with a certificate in International Law, from the Catholic University of America. 

Inka Schomer is an Operations Officer in the Gender Cross-Cutting Solutions Area (CCSA) at the World Bank where she focuses on infrastructure issues. She is currently supporting the implementation of the Gender Strategy through various activities including e.g. supporting energy operations to close gender gaps, fostering the gender and clean cooking agenda and strengthening the delivery of results through improved M&E. Previously she worked on climate and carbon finance projects and programs in the renewable energy sector with the Climate Investment Funds in DC and Camco Clean Energy Consulting in Johannesburg. She holds an MSc in Environmental Change and Management from the University of Oxford and completed a postgraduate at the University of Cape Town with majors in Economics and Environmental Management.