Urban waste-Khartoum City

How can we socially and spatially impact the waste problem in Khartoum using urban, product, system or service design thinking?

Workshop, lecture. Khartoum, August 2018. Status: call for registration is opening soon

Tags: Urbanism in Sub Saharan Africa, product/service/system design, design with empathy, city as a resource


On the absence of a formal waste management system, the urban area of Khartoum is currently facing a series problem of solid waste spread. Khartoum city is inhabited by around six million inhabitants, generating around 5000 tons of waste per day. The majority of residents can not reach out an efficient system to dispose of their daily domestic waste, ending up dropping it in unallocated places, blocking the outflow of rainwater drainage and people’s/vehicles mobility. Recently, this problem has not only contributed to hygiene-related diseases outspread but also has hindered the livability, walkability and citizens’ interactions with the public spaces in the urban Khartoum. The same issue has caused the emergence of a vulnerable group of working children scavengers who are compelled by economic hardship to collect city waste and sell it to private recycling investors. The acceleration of the waste problem in the last decade arose an inconclusive debate on its genesis. And on whether the inhabitants’ cultural perceptions or the governance system are of a direct impact on the waste problem. However, both inhabitants and authorities' acquaintance on the debate is, so far, built upon popular cultural perceptions, quantitative data and informative journalistic projection. On (Urban waste) workshop we aim to research and highlight the waste problem of Khartoum from an ethnographic perspective, deciphering its socio-cultural depth and meaning by exploring the daily lives of the people engaging in waste production, collection and processing. Urban waste workshop participants will put their gathered ethnographic data into use to ideate and conceptualize human-centered and empathy-based urban/ product/ system/ service designs that examine, expose and tackle the waste problem in Sudan’s urban spheres.

Workshop organizers

Guest lecturer: Dr. Francis Müller, Lecturer, theory expert, Zürcher Hochschule der Künste ZHdK

Presented by: Lina Ibnidris, UX, Product designer, Designers for Development DfD

Workshop partner: The University of Khartoum U.ofK., Faculty of Architecture F.oA.

official blck.png

Subscribe now to get notified of our call for registration