"We are trying to control the quantity of faecal sludge by monitoring the collecting trucks on (1) where they are heading, (2) how much amount of sludge is on them and (3) the starting time and the route of the trucks by installing weight sensors and GPS tracking based on IoT technology,"


If you are interested in organic waste management, this article is a perfect fit for you. You are about to read the research findings of Dr. Wutyi Naing on anthropogenic (human-induced) organic waste management in Mandalay. We have interviewed about her experience and findings on her Ph.D research studies, and ongoing progress of her postdoctoral project, the fecal sludge and onsite sanitation management in Mandalay.

Regarding to the educational background, Dr.Wutyi Naing had studied Pharmacy at University of Pharmacy, Mandalay, master of Environmental Engineering and Management at Asian Institute of Technology, and Ph.D in Environmental Engineering at Kyoto University. Currently, she is a postdoctoral researcher in Global Environmental Studies at Kyoto University and operating as a local project coordinator for her postdoctoral project, iFOM-IoT-based Fecal sludge and Onsite Sanitation Management.

Research Findings and Experiences 

Her Ph.D research was concerned with the analysis of anthropogenic organic wastes flow from five urban townships (Aung Myae Tharzan, Chan Aye Tharzan, Mahar Aung Myae, Chan Mya Tharzi and Pyi Gyi Dagon) within Mandalay city, including wastes from;

  • Onsite sanitation: septic tank, pit latrine and onsite sanitation effluent leakage
  • Households: wastewater, solid waste
  • Industries: wastewater and solid wastes produced from industries
  • Livestock: wastewater produced from the livestock farms
  • Agriculture: agricultural runoff

Her vision was to collect more statistical data for the better improvement and sustainable development of sanitation system in Mandalay. To present the amount/ flow of waste production, she used material flow analysis (MFA), an analytical method to quantify flows in a well-defined system. She emphasized on the flow of nitrogen and phosphorous production and for the required statistical data, she interviewed 400 households and other stakeholders like industrial managers, livestock owners, farmers and government experts. Based on the results of the MFA, she briefly described her research findings as follows; 

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Investigation of the fecal sludge management system in Mandalay

She also went site visits to Huế and Hanoi, Vietnam and Thailand to study waste management systems and river water quality testing.

"Quality control of river, drainage and waste management systems in those countries are more developed compared with Myanmar. But still, not all system is perfect and there were also some problems regarding to the estimation of quality and quantity of wastewater to meet the design criteria of the system," she added. 

Young researcher Best Poster Presentation Award, Kyoto University International Symposium, 2019, Japan

Ongoing Progress of Postdoctoral Research 

Her current postdoctoral project, iFOM-IoT-based Fecal sludge and Onsite Sanitation Management project is a winner project of "Innovations for WASH in Urban Settings" by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The idea and concept of this project is based on her PhD thesis and the baseline data resulted from her master thesis. Altogether with the young multinational team which includes local coordinators from Myanmar, Vietnam, Thailand, and Japan, she has been carrying out the project as a representative of Kyoto University.

"We are trying to control the quantity of faecal sludge by monitoring the collecting trucks on (1) where they are heading, (2) how much amount of sludge is on them and (3) the starting time and the route of the trucks by installing weight sensors and GPS tracking based on IoT technology," she explained the ongoing progress of the project.

Together with her team, she also developed a mobile application to be able to register the septic tanks, by which the time to de-sludge the tank can be estimated and the households can be informed before the tank is over accumulated or blocked. 

Suggestion for younger generation 

Few suggestions came up from her experience for upcoming learners who are going to do master and Ph.D thesis. During the period of PhD thesis, she had to adopt some data from the existing available literature of similar population and geographic conditions due to time and resource limitation. Therefore, she would like to recommend for the younger generation who will carry out similar research to consider and investigate the unit pollution loading in organic wastes such as greywater (g/cap/day) and faecal sludge (g/cap/day) for the study area.

"Moreover, I would like to suggest younger generation to explore more to find out their passion, and learn in-depth of the things they passionate with a commitment," she suggested considering the optimistic vision of the future. 


Image Caption from left to right: Activities in China, Japan, Thailand and Vietnam.