Ecological Sanitation

IHE Delft Ecological Sanitation

Target Audience

The course is designed for mid-career professionals who work in low-income countries or countries in transition, and deal with planning, promoting, designing, operating or managing sanitation systems for residents in urban, peri-urban, slum or rural areas.

Participants are typically employed by government departments, private companies, local or international NGOs, universities, research institutions, aid agencies or international bodies such as WHO or UNICEF.


This course deals with options for sustainable sanitation in low-income countries, which will contribute to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for sanitation and related fields such as reducing poverty and hunger, reducing child mortality, improving lives of slum dwellers and ensuring environmental sustainability.


Introduction to ecosan approach (4 weeks) – The need for and definition of ecosan and MDGs; Characteristics of urine, faeces and greywater; Overview of technologies for ecosan
Transfer and treatment of human excreta and greywater (6 weeks) – Treatment aspects for urine, faeces and greywater; Conventional on-site sanitation; Storage and transport logistics; Introduction to anaerobic treatment technologies; Constructed wetlands; Composting; Faecal sludge management; Alternative sewer systems; Urban groundwater pollution
Reuse of ecosan products (2 weeks) – Introduction to productive sanitation systems; Urban agriculture and reuse research results
Non-technical aspects of ecosan (2 weeks) – Financial aspects and market considerations; Social, institutional, policy and gender aspects
Water supply and ecosan (2 weeks) – Urban water demand management measures; Rainwater harvesting

Deadline IHE application: 07 May 2017 – 23.59 (CET)

Learning Objectives

Upon completion, the participant should be able to:
-Know the limitations of conventional sewer-based (“flush and forget”) or pit-based (“drop and store”) sanitation systems, in the context of developing countries, with a focus on urban or peri-urban areas
-Understand the need for a paradigm shift in urban sanitation and the relevance for the MDGs
-Have a good overview of the available technology and reuse options within the ecosan approach (collection, transfer and treatment of excreta and greywater; safe reuse; nontechnical aspects; ecosan in emergency areas, slums, and modern integrated urba