Wish for Wash

Education, Product Design, Research

Designing for Off Grid Sanitation: A Research Process Book

Wish for WASH Thinks is a part of a collaboration of agriculture technology (agtech), water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) social enterprises, and experts that seek to replace the current, linear patterns of nutrient sourcing and disposal through a “circular nutrient economy”. Also known as the Circular Sanitation Economy, this approach closes the nutrient loop by harvesting valuable nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus from waste to grow food more sustainably. This is in-line with the broader sustainability movement whereby Wish for WASH Thinks seeks to create elegant, aspirational, and accessible products that make sustainable, off-grid life within reach and dignified for all – particularly related to sanitation. At Wish for WASH Thinks, we recognize that there are some people within the U.S. who choose to live off-grid (such as tiny-home dwellers or vanlifers) and there are people who are forced to live off-grid (such as people experiencing homelessness, much of rural America, and indigenous reservations). We aim for our solutions to be used across this range of populations. The research team is handing these insights to a team of Georgia Tech students who are part of Wish for WASH’s Engineers Without Borders chapter to begin product development. This process book will serve as a road map to reference as the team of engineers begins further product development. More broadly, Wish for WASH Thinks will leverage this synthesis to move into product ideation and prototyping to drive sustainable innovation for off-grid sanitation options in the U.S.