MANAGEMENT PRACTICES, TECHNOLOGICAL CAPABILITY, GOVERNANCE PRINCIPLE APPLICATION AND SUSTAINABILITY OF WATER PROJECTS BY THE REGISTERED WATER COMPANIES IN KENYA
Owuori, Patrick, Joseph
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Kenya’s economic and social development is heavily dependent on adequate and sustainable provision of water supply and sanitation services, with the country aiming for gradual realization of universal access by 2030 in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Direct provision of water and sanitation services is undertaken by various water companies who are licenced as Water Service Providers (WSPs). However, in most project areas there is a weak sustainability of these water infrastructures and water supply systems. Water project failures have been attributed to very weak institutional support of the water supply projects. Another reason is lack of proper maintenance of the initiated water projects. Weaknesses in technical and financial capabilities are also prevalent in water utilities, which regularly report huge losses in potential revenue due to technical and commercial inefficiencies. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of management practices, technological capability, and Governance principle application on sustainability of water projects by the registered water companies in Kenya. The study used a cross-sectional survey design from a study population of 80 registered water companies in Kenya. Questionnaires were used to collect data and they were administered to a stratified sample of 429 respondents selected from among the board members and top managers of the water companies. This study used purely primary data. Quantitative data was then analysed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS version 22). This study used descriptive and inferential statistics. The findings indicated that the relationship between management practices and sustainability of water projects by the registered water companies in Kenya is statistically significant. The study concluded that there was a significant influence of management practices on sustainability of water projects by the registered water companies in Kenya. The study also revealed that Governance principle application partially mediates the relationship between management practices and sustainability of water projects and established that technological capability had a significant intervening influence on the relationship between management practices and sustainability of water projects. The study further tested moderating effect on the relationship between technological capability and sustainability of water projects and found it to be significantly higher than the individual effects. The study concluded that there exists a moderated mediating effect of Governance principle application on technological capability that produces synergy that can greatly enhance sustainability of water projects. Based on the findings, the study recommends that management of water projects should have an integrated approach that not only addresses physical investments but also improves internal technological skills and provides a governance framework that enhances stakeholder voice. The study further recommends that future studies could therefore focus on the same study but in other public sectors different from water sector.