SuSanA - Forum Kunena Site Syndication Mon, 24 Apr 2017 01:36:40 +0000 Kunena 1.6 SuSanA - Forum en-gb Re: If you were to create a new KM tool/portal/database for WASH professionals, what would it be? - by: JKMakowka
Regarding Knowledgepoint: In my experience you can post new questions, but they will not be shown to other users until a moderator approves them. The site also has serious usability issues on mobile devices and seems more or less abandoned in general.]]>
Knowledge management (KM) tools Wed, 19 Apr 2017 05:50:11 +0000
Re: If you were to create a new KM tool/portal/database for WASH professionals, what would it be? - by: muench (Perhaps one shortcoming of SuSanA is that we are weak on the WA part of WASH, but have - on purpose - focused on the S and H part of WASH)
If anyone wonders what is WASH, see here:

Kris: regarding Knowledge Point, you can post instantaneously, there is no delay (you said "every post needs to be approved by a moderator which can take weeks there sadly").

I am actually trying to come up with ways to connect Knowledge Point to this Forum and vice versa as I have seen cases of the same type of discussion in both places which is not ideal. There is willigness from WaterAid but so far we haven't figured out a good concept yet. They do cater for different audiences so that's fine, I just want to harness synergies if possible (we have another thread about it here on the Forum:

Knowledge management (KM) tools Tue, 18 Apr 2017 21:22:56 +0000
Re: If you were to create a new KM tool/portal/database for WASH professionals, what would it be? - by: JKMakowka
I think the way forward is a Q&A site with a very active community to crowd-source information. A successful example would be "Stack Overflow" ( where you can find an answer to almost anything IT related. It needs a very active community though (chicken-egg problem) and previous attempts to do something similar for WASH ( have more or less failed. However I think that was mainly a maintenance issue and that every post new question needs to be approved by a moderator which can take weeks there sadly.

This could be combined with a more specialized wiki and a federated microblogging service ("Mastodon" for example) to further cater to a community of contributors.

I was actually thinking about setting up something like that later this year as well (right now I don't have time). Feel free to take up this idea though, or alternatively we could discuss about collaborating if you don't have a strong commercial motive behind setting up such a website.]]>
Knowledge management (KM) tools Tue, 18 Apr 2017 16:59:20 +0000
If you were to create a new KM tool/portal/database for WASH professionals, what would it be? - by: edbourque
I'm a WASH consultant that has done a mix of field research, writing proposals, writing publications and I've always felt that all of the valuable WASH KM resources are scattered. News, reports, evaluations, etc. often get lost in the face of information overload.

While the answers/perspectives/needs would be different for a business development person, a researcher, or a technical evaluator in the field, what sort of resources do you wish existed? How would you leverage existing resources to make better use of them?

I've been toying with the idea of creating a portal that organizes such resources, so any ideas would be appreciated.


Knowledge management (KM) tools Tue, 18 Apr 2017 10:47:48 +0000
Reply: Centres of Excellence in FSM? - by: ChrisBuckley
The answer depends on your needs.
If they relate to
• data
• methods for the analysis of faecal sludge
• research on faecal sludge management processes and systems

A suggestion is to look at

Chris Buckley]]>
Knowledge management (KM) tools Sun, 09 Apr 2017 14:26:45 +0000
Re: Centres of Excellence in FSM? - by: rochelleholm
Mzuzu University, located in northern Malawi, was established by an Act of Parliament in May 1997 and admitted its first students in January 1999. In 2009, the Mzuzu University Centre of Excellence in Water and Sanitation was established within the Faculty of Environmental Sciences. The primary objective of the Centre is to improve the effectiveness of sanitation, hygiene practices, and water supply interventions serving Malawi and the surrounding countries.

The Centre participates in research, water quality (and coming in mid-2017 fecal sludge) analysis, training, consultancies, outreach programs, and the practical application of research findings. We excel at practical research, both bringing the results and solutions back to our areas of research and publishing for global lesson sharing. In 2013, Mzuzu University added programs for PhD and Master’s in Sanitation, and we aim to include students for practical experience in each of our Centre projects. To learn more about our awesome team and innovative current work in FSM please visit .]]>
Knowledge management (KM) tools Sun, 09 Apr 2017 12:59:26 +0000
Re: Centres of Excellence in FSM? - by: F H Mughal

F H Mughal]]>
Knowledge management (KM) tools Sun, 09 Apr 2017 06:26:50 +0000
Re: A well thought out instruction template on how to document good/best practices - by: nityajacob
This is an interesting structure and thanks for sharing the document. It seems to suggest a hierarchy of practices starting from promising and going up to good. I'm planning a discussion on the India chapter on good practices/case studies on sanitation. Have you come across other resources I can share while initiating the discussion?

Nitya Jacob]]>
Knowledge management (KM) tools Fri, 07 Apr 2017 04:11:16 +0000
Centres of Excellence in FSM? - by: indiebio
Are there centres of excellence for FSM anywhere in the world, specifically in Africa? Or, research and training centres?

Knowledge management (KM) tools Thu, 06 Apr 2017 16:20:49 +0000
Re: The project database on the SuSanA website - please help us to review and update the filter options - by: sterennphilippe
I want to start by saying that I really appreciate this database of projects. Its a great contribution to the sector.

I recently uploaded a project, and here is my feedback on the filters:

• Overall, very easy to select filters.
• I really like that the projects can be connected to Working Groups. I feel like there might be a lot of overlap with the "field of activity" and "working group" which could get confusing?
• I found the tab “Resource projects” a bit confusing. Is it asking what part of the sanitation system you are working on, and also includes the enabling environment? I think it would help to have it in the order of the sanitation system (on-site sanitation, transport, treatment, etc.)
• I like that there is the general option of “FSM” under technology. I feel like the technology options could be more categorized. I would find it easier if they were sorted by on-site sanitation technologies, emptying and transportation technologies, treatment technologies and reuse options ? For example, you could select that you are generally working on treatment technologies and below that category there are more specific options of treatment technologies that you could select (e.g., drying beds, sedimentation tank, etc.). I would then remove "Filter by reuse" which seemed very specific compared to other categories.
• Filter by audience was a bit unclear to me. Is it the target audience of the project or who you are uploading the project for?

Thanks for the great work! I will be adding more projects.

Knowledge management (KM) tools Fri, 31 Mar 2017 19:55:12 +0000
Re: A new sub-category on this Forum for "knowledge management (KM) tools" - as part of capacity development, is that OK? - by: Silvia I am new to this forum and am particularly interested in KM. I have just posted about our upcoming IMA International KM course in Brussels. For me, KM Tools can be part of broader capacity development. However KM as a way of working, an approach and a discipline is more about organisational development (OD). Good KM is now widely recognised as critical for organisations as it surfaces tacit knowledge and knowhow, allowing this to be collected, documented, shared and developed. The idea is that KM processes, systems, tools and a culture of sharing + learning can be positively institutionalised, thus supporting innovation.]]> Knowledge management (KM) tools Tue, 21 Mar 2017 21:39:29 +0000 Re: The project database on the SuSanA website - please help us to review and update the filter options - by: muench
My reply to Doreen's suggestions is as follows:

We could change it as follows (changes to the current filter setup shown in red):

Filter by kind of project
  • Resource recovery
  • Processing technologies
  • User interface
  • Faecal sludge transport
  • Enabling environment, institutional strengthening and others

Or if needed, we make "institutional strengthening" and "others" into their own bullet points?

Here I suggest we add the part in red, as emptying and transport of faecal sludge are usually combined:

Filter by kind of project
  • Resource recovery
  • Processing technologies
  • User interface
  • Faecal sludge emptying and transport
  • Enabling environment and others

If you prefer we could make this change:

Filter by setting
  • Rural
  • Urban
  • Peri-Urban
  • School Sanitation, WASH in schools
  • Informal Settlement

And this could be a potential new filter option to address your suggestion about ubscaling projects:

Filter by size
  • Desktop work only
  • Lab scale
  • Pilot scale
  • Full scale

Regarding splitting off vermicomposting or vermifilter from composting, I would tend to agree with you that it's not necessary but would like to hear more opinion on this? Currently it looks like this (should we add the part in red?):

Filter by technology
  • Biogas and DEWATS
  • Constructed wetlands
  • Composting systems, vermicomposting and vermifilters
  • Faecal sludge management
  • Flush toilets (with/without urine diversion)
  • Innovative science and technology
  • Urine diversion dehydration toilets (UDDTs)
  • Other technologies

Note that all this is not a scientifically correct categorisation scheme. The aim is for people to easily find those kinds of projects in the project database that they are looking for...

Knowledge management (KM) tools Thu, 09 Mar 2017 22:58:49 +0000
Re: The project database on the SuSanA website - please help us to review and update the filter options - by: Doreen
A few comments I have

I dont see the need of having vermicomposting as a seperate category. Yes it is a different skill set but still falls under the category of composting therefore I would not make a different filter for it.

How about the following filters that provide more holistic perspectives? Particularly in the filter by kind of project?

• WASH in Schools
• Scaling-up
• What don’t we have a filter just on FS emptying too since we have one on FS transport?
• Would enabling environment also encompass institutional strengthening?

Many thanks and best regards,

Knowledge management (KM) tools Fri, 03 Mar 2017 16:20:05 +0000
The project database on the SuSanA website - please help us to review and update the filter options - by: muench
We invite you today to give us your feedback about these filter categories by posting in this thread.

As a reminder: we started the project database in September 2013 and it is growing slowly but steadily. There are currently 266 projects listed there and we plan to double this figure in the coming year or so:

This is how the filters currently look (sorry the second image is a bit small - you can see it bigger here when you click on the green filter button at the top right:

One suggestion that came from Esther and Diane is to have a separate category for "vermi-composting / vermi-filters" (currently it is part of the category on composting systems. This could be an option worth considering.

What are your suggestions for improvements of these filters? Or suggestions about the project database in general?

As a reminder about the project database:

If you work for an organization that has been registered as a SuSanA partner you can add your own projects to this database. The amount of detail you want to add is up to you - it can be a lot or not so much and rather include a link to your own website. The database just helps people to find out which sanitation projects are taking place and where.

If you'd like to add a project but don't know how to go about it, please contact me or the SuSanA secretariat at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or post in this thread.

Currently, as part of the BMGF grant to support SuSanA, Ruth and Esther are busy adding projects for WaterAid and Oxfam to this database.

Knowledge management (KM) tools Fri, 03 Mar 2017 16:07:12 +0000
A new sub-category on this Forum for "knowledge management (KM) tools" - as part of capacity development, is that OK? - by: muench
I have created a new sub-category on "Knowledge management (KM) tools" here on the Forum which I have placed below the category on "Capacity development". This was prompted by Arno's post from last week where he made us aware of a new knowledge management tool by FAO to document best practices (

Could those of you with an interest in knowledge management tools and in capacity development please tell me if I am correct to say that KM tools is a subset of capacity development? Does it make sense like this?

Please also see the existing forum threads that I have moved to here by now:

I think these are the main KM tools that have been highlighted on the Forum so far. If there were others that I should also move please let me know.

Sometimes the differentiation is not so clear cut: what is a general capacity development tool and when does it become a knowledge management tool?

As this point I want to remind you of the definition of knowledge management that Pete Cranston reminded us about in his post here (

For the BDS KM work we focused on four activities that would be included in most definitions of KM:
Information management: the collection and management of material from one or more sources and making that material accessible to and usable by one or more audiences;
Knowledge sharing: a set of practices that enables people to share what they know with others in the application of their work;
Learning processes: both individual and collective or social, focusing less on the “sending” and more on the “receiving”, particularly the processes of sense making, understanding, and being able to act upon the information available.
Communication: in the sense of a meaningful exchange, as a foundational competence for the interactions that are at the center of learning, sharing and managing knowledge

Capacity development is defined on Wikipedia like this (good definition? If not, can we improve it?):

Community capacity building (CCB), also referred to as capacity development, is a conceptual approach to social or personal development that focuses on understanding the obstacles that inhibit people, governments, international organizations and non-governmental organizations from realizing their development goals while enhancing the abilities that will allow them to achieve measurable and sustainable results.

The term community capacity building emerged in the lexicon of international development during the 1990s. Today, "community capacity building" is included in the programs of most international organizations that work in development, the World Bank, the United Nations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) like Oxfam International. Wide use of the term has resulted in controversy over its true meaning.

Community capacity building often refers to strengthening the skills, competencies and abilities of people and communities in developing societies so they can overcome the causes of their exclusion and suffering. Organizational capacity building is used by NGOs to guide their internal development and activities.

What are your thoughts on this? Are "KM tools" a subset of capacity development or should it be separate?


P.S. The BMGF-funded SEI project on “Supporting SuSanA and the broader Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Community of Practice through an online platform” which I am part of, is also doing a lot of work on Knowledge Management (see here on the forum:]]>
Knowledge management (KM) tools Mon, 13 Feb 2017 11:08:38 +0000