Meeting Users' Needs
After a year’s research, including our technology landscaping, literature review and market research, we started our innovation work, to find sanitation solutions that are technologically feasible and meet users’ needs. From predators that digest latrine content to anaerobic pit-caps that boost bacterial activity, we identified and assessed numerous approaches before deciding which ones to develop.
We will work in partnership with entrepreneurs and businesses to bring these innovations to market. With proven technologies, prototypes and market intelligence, we’ll be the catalyst for these ventures. We even offer venture development grants to help accelerate product commercialisation, so we can make the greatest impact in improving sanitation for poor people.
Based on our scoping research, we started our first round of innovation work, taking a creative approach to make sure that we explored all possible routes.
Using interviews and workshops with guest experts, we uncovered a powerful long-list of ideas. Our core team evaluated these against detailed assessment criteria, identifying the approaches our innovation team would develop.
Of all the ideas we reviewed, we’ve chosen to focus on biofilter technology as our lead approach to addressing people’s concerns about the filling of pit latrines. As well as being effective, it’s the closest to being commercially viable, so we believe it can make a real difference to people’s lives.
Project Tiger is our market-led design and development activity for a biofilter system, based on tiger worms which digest latrine content.
Close behind our lead biofilter concept are two alternative approaches, the Black Soldier Fly Larvae and Next-generation Bio-additives. Both have high potential for reducing pit-filling, but involve key challenges which we’re addressing before we can consider their commercial application.
Through researching both options, we will decide whether they’re ready to be moved into application development.
Businesses to deliver our innovations
Whether you’re an entrepreneur or an established business, we’re looking for partners to take our lead innovations to market. That’s how we’ll make the greatest impact in improving sanitation for poor people.
With proven technologies, prototypes and market intelligence, we’ll be the catalyst for these business ventures.
If you’re interested in helping commercialise our ideas, you may be eligible for one of our business development grants to help accelerate product development and commercialisation.
We’re committed to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s policy of Global Access. This means we ensure our innovations, products and information are accessible to the people most in need in the developing world.
We’re developing specific strategies for our lead innovations which will cover existing IP held by third parties as well as exploitation of new IP we generate.