Forum user of the month for January 2014 is Florian Klingel from Switzerland !
(1 viewing) (1) Guest
  • Page:
  • 1

TOPIC: Forum user of the month for January 2014 is Florian Klingel from Switzerland !

Forum user of the month for January 2014 is Florian Klingel from Switzerland ! 20 Jan 2014 11:42 #7060

  • secretariat
  • CONTACT
  • Moderator
  • SuSanA secretariat currently allocates 2 full time person equivalents of time from members of GIZ Sustainable Sanitation Team: Arne Panesar,Trevor Surridge, Rahul Ingle, and the time equivalent of one intern: Sebastian Klos and Friederike Guettner
  • Posts: 398
  • Likes received: 137
  • Karma: 9

userofmonth-logo-smaller-2_2014-01-20.jpg



Dear all,

We have the pleasure of announcing today the third forum member to be rewarded for his outstanding contributions to the forum (in September we had highlighted Kris Makowka, see here: forum.susana.org/forum/categories/10-by-...rischan-makowka#5751 and in November Doreen Mbalo: forum.susana.org/forum/categories/10-by-...en-mbalo-from-kenya- )

Today we would like to give special recognition to:

Florian Klingel

for his excellent posts and long-term support of the forum.

Here is a link to his forum profile (visible only for logged-in users): forum.susana.org/forum/profile/userid-859

Here you see Florian at work (studying constucted wetlands in France):

DSC01224.JPG


And in Kosovo:

IMG_3730.JPG


Florian regularly contributes thoughtful and detailed posts covering a range of topics. When he feels strongly about a topic, he does not hold back in engaging in longer and animated discussions with other forum members where he makes clear and strong points, like in this thread about patents, open access information and business models:
forum.susana.org/forum/categories/39-any...sanitation-inovation
where he wrote:
Your last point touches one of the main dilemmas (if not THE main issue) we face in sanitation: there is just too often no or not enough direct profit or interest for people in improving their sanitation systems.


Or in this thread about the New York Times article “Bill Gates can’t build a toilet”:
forum.susana.org/forum/categories/139-ge...-cant-build-a-toilet
where he wrote:
It may have to do with people not knowing about technologies, not knowing how to install them, not knowing how to get support to install them, or not seeing the point of making an effort to install them in the first place.


We highly appreciate Florian's contributions on the forum, his reminders of the important non-technical aspects of sanitation and in general his posts which keep the forum alive, relevant and interesting. Thank you very much, Florian!

And finally the statistics for Florian’s activities on the forum (forum.susana.org/forum/categories/userlist): Florian has made 166 posts (putting him in 7th place in terms of posts made), he has received 55 likes (5th place) and 7 Karma points (4th place).

In the next post I will provide you with an interview with Florian (in two parts).


[Posted by Elisabeth on behalf of the secretariat]
Posted by a member of the SuSanA secretariat held by the GIZ Sustainable sanitation sector program
Located at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, Eschborn, Germany
Follow us on facebook: www.facebook.com/susana.org and twitter: twitter.com/susana_org
Last Edit: 20 Jan 2014 11:57 by muench.
The following user(s) like this post: tmsinnovation

Re: Forum user of the month for January 2014 is Florian Klingel from Switzerland ! 20 Jan 2014 12:06 #7062

  • secretariat
  • CONTACT
  • Moderator
  • SuSanA secretariat currently allocates 2 full time person equivalents of time from members of GIZ Sustainable Sanitation Team: Arne Panesar,Trevor Surridge, Rahul Ingle, and the time equivalent of one intern: Sebastian Klos and Friederike Guettner
  • Posts: 398
  • Likes received: 137
  • Karma: 9
The following are a series of interview-type questions that Florian kindly took the time to answer for us:

Part 1: About Florian as a person and about his work

You registered already on 15 Aug 2011 which is only one month after the forum was launched. How come?

Well, as a former member of the gtz ecosan project and a member of the ecosanres mailing list I was always more less following what was happening with Susana and the ecosan project. So when you put up the forum, I joined.

What is your nationality and where are you living right now?

I am German and grew up in a village not too far from Stuttgart. Since three years I am living in St. Gallen, Switzerland.

Where and what did you study, and why?

I studied Environmental Engineering at the University of Rostock and the ETH Lausanne, where I graduated. Why? I had lots of ideas around green study topics, including forestry, biology, ecology etc. I guess it was a bit consideration about job chances that made me eventually choose engineering studies, though still with a green touch. I wasn’t thinking even remotely of development cooperation at that time, this came later towards the end of my studies. In hindsight now I think that forestry combined with development cooperation or climate issues would have also been a good choice. Still I am very happy with my choice, I enjoy working around pipes and toilets, and in my free time I go the forests

Where do you work now and what does your organization do? How is it funded?

I am working for Skat Consulting AG, based in St. Gallen, Switzerland. Skat is a consulting company, funded entirely from contracts from diverse clients. We have a few larger implementation projects in Eastern Europe and Africa and offer a range of other services like project planning, backstopping or evaluations. We are strongest in rural water and sanitation, but also have good expertise in other issues like solid waste, governance, energy, housing, transportation, knowledge management and networking. Our main client is the Swiss government (SDC), but we also work for many other clients like GIZ, UN, NGOs, development banks etc. I myself am mainly working in water and sanitation projects in Moldova, Kosovo and Central America as well as in backstopping of the global water section of SDC.

Skat also has a foundation, Skat Foundation, where we do smaller projects funded mainly from profits from the consulting projects. Some research work and our function as secretariat for the Rural Water Supply Network are also done by the foundation.

Example: UDDTs in Moldova that we are involved in - see photo below

What are your plans for your future career in the longer term?

So far I’ve been planning one step after the other rather than following a long term plan. Also, career is not the only thing to consider when making plans, there is the family as well. We are quite happy at St. Gallen at the moment and I like my work at Skat, so that will continue for a couple of years I think. Afterwards, we’ll see.

What would you recommend to youngsters from countries in the global North who want to get involved in development work – how should they go about it? And does it even make sense?

There are many ways for getting involved in development work. Young people can try to get into it right after graduation, with internships and short term assignments in partner countries being the best way to quickly collect relevant experience. But first building up a solid career and experience in Europe and only later on going international is an equally good way (sometimes I quite miss having solid experience in the German water sector). So no clear recommendation, just do what you’re most interested in and motivated for. And when thinking about going into development work, it’s good to be aware that the question “does it even make sense?” will be with you all the time.

What three things would you take to a remote island? Or what are the three “things” that are really important for you in practical terms?

Not things, but three: my family, of course.

What books or magazines can be found on your bedside table?

Bird books.


We will post Part 2 of the interview (Part 2: About Florian's opinions about the forum) in about two days from now.

Regards,

Elisabeth [posted on behalf of the SuSanA secretariat]
Attachments:
Posted by a member of the SuSanA secretariat held by the GIZ Sustainable sanitation sector program
Located at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, Eschborn, Germany
Follow us on facebook: www.facebook.com/susana.org and twitter: twitter.com/susana_org
Last Edit: 20 Jan 2014 12:11 by secretariat.
The following user(s) like this post: canaday, Doreen, JKMakowka

Re: Forum user of the month for January 2014 is Florian Klingel from Switzerland ! 23 Jan 2014 11:40 #7095

  • secretariat
  • CONTACT
  • Moderator
  • SuSanA secretariat currently allocates 2 full time person equivalents of time from members of GIZ Sustainable Sanitation Team: Arne Panesar,Trevor Surridge, Rahul Ingle, and the time equivalent of one intern: Sebastian Klos and Friederike Guettner
  • Posts: 398
  • Likes received: 137
  • Karma: 9
Here comes Part 2 of our interview with Florian:

Part 2: About Florian's opinions about the forum

What is making you write on the forum - what do you expect by making posts? How have you benefited yourself from using the forum?

Often it is just for distracting myself from work OK seriously, I usually post either if there is someone asking for information and I feel I can contribute, or if there is a nice controversial discussion going on. I don’t expect much from posting, I do it because the topics discussed are interesting to me. Still I benefit a lot, mainly by being made aware of lots of interesting projects, concepts, publications and people.


Do your colleagues also use the forum?

Not much, I think, some are reading from time to time. It’s quite difficult to follow all what happens in the internet, so everyone picks his/her own streams to follow on a regular basis.


What don’t you like about the forum or about other forum users?

Nothing to complain about other users.
For the forum in general, what I don’t like so much is its strong focus on technology and research. I often have the feeling that the focus of the forum is quite different from what I need in my work. In my work, which is about improving sanitation in specific locations or countries, technology is always the least of problems. The difficult questions are about what approaches a project should apply to support communities in improving and maintaining their facilities; what to do to make people actually being interested in sanitation and willing to make efforts for improving it; how to help establishing working management structures for an issue people have little interest; how to get away from the donor driven project approach and better support local governments to do their job in improving their citizens lives and toilets; how to bring good local experiences to scale; etc. etc. To me, all these questions are very much what sustainable sanitation is about. But the Susana forum seems to attract only few people interested in this type of questions.


If you could change something about the forum, what would it be?

To follow what I said above, I’d like to see the forum expanding its user base to other groups than researchers and small NGOs. For example it would be nice to see people working for large funding organizations discussing about the best approaches for massively investing into bringing up sanitation coverage in a country; or people from service providers discussing about ways to increase revenues to finance their sanitation services. Maybe a start into this direction could be to try motivating the many SuSanA members that are not yet participating in the forum to actually do it.


What is your advice to the forum moderators?

No advice, you are doing a great job (which is also made easy by good mannered participants).


Which topics or categories on the forum do you feel most passionate about?

I like discussing very practical questions (when I feel I can contribute to it) and I like to complain about too much faith in technology


2007-08190.JPG

Research work in Vietnam, where Florian (first from left) lived for 4 years before moving to Switzerland

+++++++++++++++

Thank you, Florian, for taking the time to answer our questions, and once again congratulations on this award which is so well deserved!

[posted by Elisabeth on behalf of the SuSanA secretariat]
Posted by a member of the SuSanA secretariat held by the GIZ Sustainable sanitation sector program
Located at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, Eschborn, Germany
Follow us on facebook: www.facebook.com/susana.org and twitter: twitter.com/susana_org
Last Edit: 23 Jan 2014 11:44 by secretariat.
The following user(s) like this post: tmsinnovation, Doreen, inajurga, AquaVerde
  • Page:
  • 1
Moderators: KimAndersson
Time to create page: 0.44 seconds