Civil servant in fecal sludge dewatering

Eawag, the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, is an internationally networked aquatic research institute within the ETH Domain (Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology). Eawag conducts research, education and expert consulting to achieve the dual goals of meeting direct human needs for water and maintaining the function and integrity of aquatic ecosystems.

Sandec, the Department of Sanitation, Water and Solid Waste for Development seeks a motivated and qualified person for an

Civil servant in fecal sludge dewatering


Nearly half of the world's population relies on non-sewered sanitation. In urban areas of low-income countries, dilute wastewater is stored at the source of generation (referred to as fecal sludge), prior to energy-intensive transport by road to treatment. Established solutions for solid-liquid separation (dewatering) rely on passive technologies that require a large footprint, and in urban areas, land is scarce and expensive. Hence, dewatering is the missing link in the fecal sludge treatment chain. Alternative low footprint dewatering solutions used in sewer-based wastewater treatment are expensive, not adapted for fecal sludge, and require continual supply of energy.

In collaboration with GOAL, a humanitarian response agency, we are piloting a low-energy, low-footprint dewatering technology in Freetown, Sierra Leone. The technology consists of open-source sensor technology, bio-based flocculants and a locally manufactured, manually operated dewatering press. Piloting this technology will provide the required data for scaling to similar contexts in Sub-Saharan Africa and globally.

We are looking for a civil servant to support piloting of the low-energy, low-footprint dewatering technology in Freetown, Sierra Leone together with our project partner GOAL.

Objectives and responsibilities:

  • Support construction of fecal sludge dewatering pilot plant
  • Support local manufacturing of dewatering press technology
  • Operate dewatering pilot plant and analyze wastewater samples
  • Candidates for this position should have the following qualifications:

  • Technical apprenticeship, or study background in engineering or natural science
  • Interest in wastewater treatment
  • Ability to work independently, manage own time, and take own initiative
  • Fluency in English (spoken and written)
  • Capability to collaborate with research partners and stakeholders
  • Willingness to work abroad for 4-5 months
  • Internship duration

    Six months, earliest starting date is 1 June 2024

    Place of work

    1-2 months at Eawag in Dübendorf, Switzerland, and 4-5 months in Freetown, Sierra Leone.


    Mr. Michael Vogel and Dr Linda Strande (Eawag).

    For further information , please contact Michael Vogel via email.

    Eawag is a modern employer and offers an excellent working environment where staff can contribute their strengths, experience and ways of thinking. We promote gender equality and are committed to staff diversity and inclusion. The compatibility of career and family is of central importance to us. For more information about Eawag and our work conditions please consult www. and www.

    Please note that we can only accept applications from people from Switzerland who are required to perform compulsory civilian service.

    Applications must be submitted by 21 April 2024 and should include a cover letter and CV.

    We look forward to receiving your application (a cover letter and CV) through the Eawag webpage, any other way of applying will not be considered. Please click on the button below, this will take you directly to the application form.


    Eawag: Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology

    Job details


    Civil servant in fecal sludge dewatering





    March 29, 2024

    Application deadline

    April 21, 2024

    Job type



    Agricultural Science,Biology,Engineering,Geosciences,Physics

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