Gamification of sanitation planning

Last changed: 21 October 2021

Gamification of sanitation planning: Exploring technical and societal readiness of nutrient-recovery systemsThere is pressing need for innovations in the sanitation sector which improve nutrient-recovery and provide services for all. There are a growing number of nutrient-recovery technologies available, but a majority are still in the formative phase of development and not widely applied. This may be because implementing these solutions means rethinking not just the technical treatment process, but the collection system, user interactions and management organisations. Improving the capacity of our waste systems to recovery valuable resource means transforming some of the core structures within the system.

The aim of this project is to explore opportunities for scaling-up systems for nutrient-recovery from wastewater in Sweden. It recognizes that increasing use of such systems is not only about dealing with technical bugs, market formation or social acceptance, but also depends heavily on the readiness of our institutional systems and on integration into planning processes; not only the planning of service providers but also of other agencies and organizations involved in a resource recovery system. The study will therefore:

1)      investigate the technical and market readiness of these systems,

2)      study the readiness of society to accept alternative systems,

3)      develop, test and evaluate “serious gaming” as an planning technique for promoting innovation in wastewater planning.

Results from the project will help determine the potential of alternative nutritional recovery systems to provide benefits to public health and the environment. At the same time, the project develops practical tools and methods for planning and decision making that can be used to handle the necessary transformations in waste management.


Billger, M, Kain, J-H, Niwagaba, C.B, & McConville, J.R. (2020). Lessons from co-designing a resource-recovery game for collaborative urban sanitation planning. IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, 588 (2020) 042041, DOI:10.1088/1755-1315/588/4/042041.

Lennartsson M, Mcconville J, Kvarnström E, Hagman M, and Kjerstadius H. (2019). Investments in Innovative Urban Sanitation – Decision-Making Processes in Sweden. Water Alternatives 12 (2): 588–608.

Johannesdottir, S. L., Macura, B., McConville, J., Lorick, D., Haddaway, N. R., Karczmarczyk, A., Ek, F., Piniewski, M., Księżniak and Osuch, P. (2020). What evidence exists on ecotechnologies for recycling carbon and nutrients from domestic wastewater? A systematic map. Environmental Evidence, 9(1). 24. DOI: 10.1186/s13750-020-00207-7 


RECLAIM - a collaborative resource-recovery game for urban sanitation planning

Serious Game 


The project started in 2017 and continues through 2020.

Participating from the department: Jennifer McConville (project leader) and Håkan Jönsson

External partner:  Jaan-Henrik Kain, Chalmers University of Technology

The project is funded by the Swedish Research Council Formas