Rehabilitation Priority

Beta version 1.0 released October 2021

Rehabilitation Priority Tool


The Rehabilitation Priority Tool provides recommendations for which non-functional water points should be considered for repair.

Recommendations can be filtered to focus on the:

  • Total population within 1km of water point
  • Potential population that would regain access if point is repaired
  • Crucialness of water point (ie, are there alternative water points nearby)
  • Pressure on the water point (ie, is the water point over or under-utilized)

Illustrative Uses

  • Prioritizing which water points to rehabilitate
  • Highlighting areas where there limited alternative water points available
  • Understanding which water points are over- or under-utilized
  • Benchmarking rehabilitation needs to inform district budgets and workplans


  1. Click on Filter by Region on the left-hand menu bar and then select target country and administrative divisions from the drop-down menus. The map will update based on your selections.
  2. Click on Top Water Points to view a table which shows the top ten water points for rehabilitation. You can choose to sort this table by four parameters: total local population within 1km of water point, potential population served, crucialness or pressure (see definitions below for more detail).
  3. Click on Settings to customize the results and visualizations.
  4. Click on an individual water point to see more information about that water point.
  5. The Download button will provide a CSV of the complete WPDx dataset amended with the Rehab Priority tool results. If you have filtered to a specific geography of interest or zoomed into a smaller area, only those points will be included in the download file.


This tool uses the latest available data from the WPdx-Plus dataset combined with a population estimate layer (shown in purple). Please note that water points with an unknown status are analyzed as if the status is non-functional.

The tool calculates the local population, which is number of people living within a 1km radius of each water point.

The tool also calculates potential water point users for each water point. Potential users are calculated based on the relative distance between the population and water points within a 1km radius. Water points which are closer to the population are assigned a higher proportion of the population compared to water points which are farther away. For functional water points, this figure represents likely users, or the number of people who currently have access to a specific working water service. For non-functional water points, this figure represents the population that could gain access to a water service if the point were to be rehabilitated.

The crucialness score (0-100%) is the ratio of potential users to the total local population within a 1km radius of the water point. Crucialness provides a measure of water system redundancy. For example, if there is only 1 water point within a 1km radius, the water point crucialness score is 100%, meaning that there are no nearby alternatives. If there are two functional water points within 1km, the crucialness score for each point will be ~50% indicating there is some redundancy in the system, so if one water point is broken down, users have an alternative water point available. For non-functional water points, the crucialness score shows how important the water point would be if it were to be rehabilitated. See example here.

The pressure score (0-100%) is calculated based on the ratio of the number of people assigned to that water point over the theoretical maximum population which can be served based on the technology. If a point is serving less than the recommended maximum, the utilization score will be less than 100% (i.e., 250/500 = 0.5). If a point is serving more than the recommended maximum, the utilization score will be over 100% (i.e., 750/500 = 150%). The following recommended maximum values (extended from Sphere Guidelines) are currently in use:

  • 250 people per tap [tapstand, kiosk, rainwater catchment]
  • 300 people per protected spring
  • 400 people per hand pump [all hand pumps]
  • 400 people per open hand well [rope and bucket]
  • 1000 people per mechanized well

Top Water Points Table Options:

  • Sort data in table to show priorities based on local population, potential users, crucialness or pressure by clicking on the header name of interest. The top 15 points for your selected parameter will appear with a yellow halo on the map. (default is local population)
  • If you are interested in focusing on the non-functional points only, turn functional points OFF in Settings. Sort by Local Pop or Potential Users.
  • If you are interested in evaluating system redundancy, turn functional point ON in Settings and sort by Crucialness.
  • If you are interested in exploring which points may be over-utilized, turn functional points ON in Settings and sort by Pressure.
  • If you want to include points in urban areas, SELECT ‘Show points in urban areas’ under settings.


Under Settings on the left-hand menu bar, users can make the following selections:

  • Show functional points: If selected, both functional and non-functional points will appear on the map and be included in the Top Water Points table.
  • Show points in urban areas: If selected, both rural and urban points will appear on the map and be included in the Top Water Points table. Urban areas are as defined by the EU Global Human Settlement Database.
  • Show potential users: If selected, the number of people who can be served by this point will appear on the map. This information is also available in the dialog box that appears if you click on a specific water point.
  • Show crucialness heatmap: If selected, a heat map will appear that highlights the water points with a higher crucialness score, meaning that there are not alternate points within a 1km radius.
  • Show likely users heatmap: If selected, a heat map will appear that highlights functional water points with dense populations.

Data Sources

With appreciation, we utilize the following data sources within the app:

Administrative Boundaries

Population data

Roads and buildings

Urban areas

Water point data

Considerations and Limitations

This analysis is based on the latest available data from the WPdx+ dataset,  population estimates from the Facebook High Resolution Population Datasets and administrative boundaries from GADM or HDX (Eswatini, Ghana and Uganda).

WPdx is an open-source repository for data and contributors include governments, NGOs, academic researchers, and others. WPdx has not directly collected this data or verified the accuracy of the data on the platform. WPdx does perform basic validation checks to ensure that required parameters are included and that GPS locations match with the country boundaries of the provided datasets. Additional cleaning and categorizing steps are taken to prepare the dataset for analysis. Full details of these processes can be found on our website. Questions and feedback are more than welcome.

Populations in urban areas, as defined by the EU Global Human Settlement Database are removed from the total administrative region population to provide an estimate of the rural population. While included on the maps for visualization purposes, packaged and delivered water facilities are not included in the analyses to determine served and unserved populations.

Any water points that have been broken, rehabilitated, or constructed since data was uploaded are not included in this analysis. Additionally, household connections are not captured in WPdx. While large urban areas are removed from the analysis if they reach a specified population density, smaller piped schemes with household connections may be missed. As a result, peri-urban areas may be identified as optimal locations for rehabilitation or new construction, even if those communities are already served by household connections.Additionally, because urban populations are based on population density, there may be areas that are locally considered urban which are considered rural in this analysis, or inversely rural areas that are considered urban for this analysis.

Questions and Feedback

We value your feedback! If you have any questions or suggestions on the tool, please provide your input here.

If you have any general question, please contact us here.


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