Pedi Obani

PhD fellow


Environmental Human Rights and Development, case of sanitation

Research Summary

The purpose of this study is to analyse the effectiveness of the rights approach for environmental sustainability and related human development objectives, using access to sanitation as an instrumental case study. The overarching research questions are: how suitable are environmental rights for the pursuit of human development and environmental sustainability; and how far can environmental rights be expanded?

The overarching research questions are further divided into six sub-research questions:

  • How much variance in the achievement of access to sanitation globally can be attributed to the human rights-based approach?
  • Why has the human right to sanitation proved less successful than the human right to water in terms of safety, cleanness, affordability, accessibility, suitability, and equity?
  • How can the performance of the human right to sanitation be enhanced?
  • How can the performance of the human right to sanitation be enhanced?
  • How far can the human-rights based approach be expanded to environmental challenges such as climate change, sustainable livelihood; access to eco-system based services, and gender justice?
  • How can environmental rights be compatible with the principle of common but differentiated responsibility for global environmental issues?

The research questions will be answered using a combination of legal analysis and qualitative social science research methods. Field visits will be conducted in slums Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, in order to highlight the role and limits of the human rights to sanitation particularly in slums and under emergency situations. Finally, findings from the case study will be extrapolated to the discourse for expansion of environmental rights.

Local Supervisor: Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun

Funding Source: NUFFIC

Link to CV of Pedi Obani


  • E. Akwuebu and P. C. Obani, ‘Regulatory Framework for the Management of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (EEE)’. Paper presented at the Electronics Goes Green Conference 2012 held in Berlin on 9 – 12 September, 2012.
  • P. Obani, Floods At Large: We Either Flee or Fight to Live! (2012) 7 ELRI NewsLetter 18.
  • P. C. Obani, ‘National Climate Change Bill 2008: On the Path to Energy Technology and Infrastructure for Sustainable Development In Nigeria’. Paper presented at the 5th Annual NAEE/IAEE International Conference on Energy Technology and Infrastructure for Development, held at Sheraton Hotel & Towers, Abuja, Nigeria on 23 – 24 April, 2012.

Other information

Ms. Pedi Obani graduated on 16 May 2018. Read more here


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