New course for entrepreneurs in resource recovery and reuse

Engineers and intrapreneurs can access online course offering solutions to challenges of waste management and sanitation, proposing business models that transform human waste into fertilizer, food waste into biogas, and wastewater into irrigation sources.

Everyday, humans generate millions of tons of waste. But this waste — rich in water, nutrients, energy and organic compounds — isn’t properly managed. Meanwhile, farmers wrestle with water scarcity and depleted soils.

In 2018, researchers at the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) published Resource Recovery from Waste, a book examining how Resource Recovery and Reuse (RRR) offers solutions to challenges of waste management and sanitation. The business models proposed include methods for transforming human waste into fertilizer, food waste into biogas and wastewater into irrigation sources.

Now, entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs involved with business opportunities in these sectors can enroll in the online course “Resources, Recovery and Reuse (RRR) Entrepreneurship.”

Developed by researchers at IWMI and experts at cewas, this series offers weekly video lectures and worksheets, as well as useful links and reading recommendations. The program, recommended to take eight hours of work per week, will prepare individuals who are beginning businesses related to RRR.

Take the course: Resources, Recovery and Reuse (RRR) Entrepreneurship

Course duration: 6 Modules comprising 20 weeks of video lectures
Time investment: Recommended 8 hours/week or at your own pace
Target group: Entrepreneurs or intrapreneurs with technical RRR prototype
Requirements: Background in engineering, water and sanitation management or agriculture recommended
Contents: Business opportunities and environment, business model, planning operations and finances, planning and financing the launch


The course was launched in late August during Stockholm World Water Week, and is made available through the Sustainable Sanitation and Water Management Toolbox, an online resource for audiences ranging from decision makers and NGOs to industrial water users and farmers.

In addition to this program, WLE/IWMI researchers are working to implement the model into the curricula of 19 colleges and universities.

This course was developed by researchers at the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) / CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE), and business development experts at cewas – coaching entrepreneurs in water and sanitation. Funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). 


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