Noa, Fionn and Holger in the Berlin WTO-project headquarters at UdK, Berlin
Just before I left for my summer vacation I met Noa and Fionn, the two design students of Axel Kufus, who are going to devote their final design thesis to our WTO sanitation project.
Also present were Prof. Axel Kufus, Christian Zöllner, his assistent, and Holger Schmitz, a branding and marketing expert turned betterplace volunteer, who is researching possible business models. Noa and Fionn presented the first draft of their concept, which revolves around the idea of a mobile toilet production unit, which travels from location to location, offering a modular kit of toilet designs, some of which are standardized, globally produced parts, while others are locally produced. The kit should be modular, i.e. starting with very basic parts and ending with very aspirational additions.
In mid July, just before the end of the summer term, the Berlin students are going to meet the Karlsruhe students to exchange ideas and concepts, as some have started to look more into technology, while others have focused on possible sales and distribution mechanisms etc.
The young designers are now in the process of connecting to a local “Southern” NGO/organisation to jointly develop ideas, enriching and localising their conceptual ideas. Thus we have been turning to Jack Sim for advice.
Later this summer the design group is going to connect with Sören Rüd (from the Gtz ecosan team) to discuss technological questions, majorly effecting the design process. Meanwhile Holger wants to get in touch with local santiation entrepreneurs in Southeast Asia to find out which approaches work and which don’t.
I find it extremely stimulating to witness the project from the sideline, here and there adding my 2 cents worth of wisdom. The first results should be in by early autumn and I will keep you posted.