Course 1: Introduction into the Ecosan approach

Unit 1.1: Ecosan and the MDGs

Expected Study Load: 8 hours.

Ecosan and the MDGs

In the first unit of our course, we will first discuss the principles of ecological sanitation or ecosan; see the meaning of sustainability; and see the development of ecosan over the years. Then, we see why there is a need for ecosan: we discuss the shortage of water and arable land, we briefly discuss other limitations such as the discussion around phosphorus, and we introduce the issues related to conventional (pit based or water based) sanitation systems. After that, we discuss the Millennium Development Goals: what are these goals, which goals relate to Sanitation and how, what changed over the years, what is the Joint Monitoring Program. We will go more into detail on how ecosan help more than one MDG at the same time. The unit is built up from 3 parts:

  • Part A: What does ecosan stand for?
  • Part B: Why is there a need for ecosan?
  • Part C: Ecosan, sanitation and MDGs

Learning Objectives:

After completing this unit, you will:

  • have an appreciation of the “sanitation crisis” in developing countries
  • be able to describe shortcomings of conventional sanitation (sewer-based or pit based)
  • be able to describe in broad terms the concept of ecosan
  • have an appreciation of the concept of sustainability as it relates to sanitation
  • be able to discuss which of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) targets are related to sanitation
  • know about the particular difficulties of sanitation provision in urban slums, and the role ecosan could play to improve the situation

Things to Do:

  1. Read this Unit plan
  2. Listen to the MP3 introducing this Unit [Unit 1.1_Audio]
  3. Download and read the lecture notes for this unit
  4. Download and read the Assigned Reading Materials for Unit 1.1
  5. Visit the websites listed in the Places to Go section
  6. Submit the assignment entitled "Introduce yourself" and "Introduce your country or city".
  7. Participate in the Discussion Forum
  8. Check your knowledge in the self assessment for Unit 1.1

Places to Go:

Recommended reading sources on Internet


Last modified: Monday, 10 September 2012, 11:20 AM