Mui Ho
Center for Cities

The Cornell Mui Ho Center for Cities transfers knowledge to action to build more equitable and sustainable cities today and in the future.

Urban Waste Management in Informal Settlements


Instructors: Professor Victoria A. Beard and Dr. Benjamin Wilde
Fall 2024, Fridays 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Credits: 4

Workshop Overview

The purpose of the workshop is to gain a better understanding of the complexities and nuance of urban waste management in densely populated informal settlements in rapidly urbanizing environments. The workshop uses a co-production model, working closely with partners at Slum Dwellers International-Kenya (SDI-K). It also involves engagement with with other stakeholders doing work in Nairobi. The workshop focuses on Mathare informal settlement, while also considering the challenge of urban waste management at the Nairobi city-scale. Below is a list of deliverables students will gain experience working on.

  1. Landscape analysis of urban waste streams in Mathare and Nairobi.
  2. Document best practices and innovations in the urban sanitation space.
  3. Develop a Waste Management Strategy for Mathare.
  4. Develop a funding proposal for sustainable waste management in Mathare.

Who can enroll?

The course is open to advanced undergraduate students and graduate students. Please send a 1-page expression of interest to Victoria Beard and Ben Wilde. Your expression of interest should express how the workshop addresses your educational and/or professional goals and experience you have or would like to gain relating to:

  • Rapidly urbanizing contexts, informal settlements, and urban sanitation;
  • African urban development;
  • Urban poverty, inequality, and sustainability;
  • Research, writing, graphic design, data analysis;
  • Coproduction and collaborative work with civil society organizations and communities.
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