Department Sanitation, Water and Solid Waste for Development

Main Focus

Our mandate is to develop and test methods and technologies that help the worlds’ poorest access sustainable water and sanitation services. We do this by:

  • Working in close collaboration with international and local universities, NGOs, governmental bodies and development organizations, to ensure buy-in and future scale-up.
  • Testing and piloting research applications in partner countries at the household, community, and city-wide scale.
  • Publishing and disseminating our research and training tools for free.


Our five strategic research themes are:

Strategic Environmental Sanitation Planning
Our aim is to develop sanitation strategies and concepts that are socially, culturally and technically appropriate in urban and peri-urban settings.

Municipal Solid Waste Management
We focus on innovative solutions for the appropriate treatment of the organic fraction of municipal solid waste.

Management of Excreta, Wastewater and Sludge
We address three main challenges in faecal sludge mangement: optimisation of treatment technologies, innovation in resource recovery, and methods for sustainable system level implementation.

Water Supply and Treatment
We develop sustainable and cost-efficient approaches for measuring and improving drinking water quality.

Safe Water Promotion
We develop and evaluate appropriate solutions that strengthen access to and enhance the consumption of safe drinking water in vulnerable households in low income countries.