Project summary

Unsafe management of human faecal waste represents a major risk for public and environmental health. In 2015, an estimated 2.3 billion people did not have access to improved sanitation facilities and the global SDGs contain an ambitious target of ensuring access to adequate sanitation for all by 2030. Despite increasing toilet coverage rates, the sustainability of sanitation (behaviour) change has emerged as a crucial challenge that may prevent expected health and non-health benefits of improved sanitation to materialize. This PhD project will address this challenge. It will adopt a contextually-sensitive perspective to investigate sanitation dynamics. It has an ambition to bridge two distinct perspectives in current sanitation research including the focus on micro-level behavioural and infrastructural determinants (predominant in public-health research) and on the structural political-economy and political-ecology drivers of sanitation change (as in recent critical sanitation research). The research will consist of both field research following up on our previous work in India and Ethiopia (focus on another low- or middle- income country is also possible) and desk research including work on projects’ proposals and reviews. Candidates with strong interdisciplinary capabilities eager to combine social- and environmental-science approaches and methodologies are particularly welcome.

Five relevant publications of the research group

NOVOTNÝ, J., HUMŇALOVÁ, H., KOLOMAZNÍKOVÁ, J. (2018): The social and political construction of latrines in rural Ethiopia. Journal of Rural Studies, 63, 157-167.

NOVOTNÝ, J., FICEK, F., HILL, J. K., KUMAR, A. (2018): Social determinants of environmental health: A case of sanitation in rural Jharkhand. Science of The Total Environment, 643, 762-774.

NOVOTNÝ, J., HASMAN, J., LEPIČ, M. (2018): Contextual factors and motivations affecting rural community sanitation in low- and middle-income countries: A systematic review. International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health, 221, 2, 121-133.

FICEK, F., NOVOTNÝ, J. (2018-efirst): Comprehending practitioners' assessments of Community-Led Total Sanitation. Health Promotion International, DOI: 10.1093/heapro/day070

NOVOTNÝ, J., KOLOMAZNÍKOVÁ, J., HUMŇALOVÁ, J. (2017): The Role of Perceived Social Norms in Rural Sanitation: An Explorative Study from Infrastructure-Restricted Settings of South Ethiopia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, 2017, 14, 794.

Current research grants of the group


Deadline is closed

Don’t hesitate, submit an application now!

Choose your specialization