Water School Helps India’s Youngsters to Shape a Sustainable Future

A research project by the internationally acclaimed Studio Makkink & Bey, the Water School is an elementary school in India where children will learn sustainable living and resource management.

During this year’s International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam (IABR), Studio Makkink & Bey invite experts into their workspace in the M4H district in Rotterdam to develop ideas on how to manage our most valuable resource — water! Visitors will get the chance to attend lectures and discussions on different aspects of water management, such as Clean, Grow, Harvest, Make, Build, and Document.

The design studio will be continue working with partners building a future-proof elementary school in the district of Dwarka, a neighborhood in New Delhi. The population in this area suffers from poor water management and has regularly been through critical water shortages in the last years. In Dwarka, 90% of yearly rain falls during the short monsoon season. This would be enough for the local population, but there’s no effective system to store and distribute it.

The aim is to set up the entire school while keeping in mind the role water plays in it. From the production of the school uniforms, to the food children eat during lunch break — and even the toilets will be designed to save water. Designers, craftsmen and scientists alike will be invited to teach and develop projects with the children. Studion Makkink & Bey already explored the issue of flushing down loads of clean, fresh water to get rid of our urine and poop. Their CompostKlikoToilet is a compost bin toilet where human faeces are re-used — for example phosphates from our urine, that are valuable fertilizers for the soil.

Studio Makkink & Bey’s compost toilet show during the Everything you’ve always wanted to know about toilets, but were afraid to ask exhibition at Cube Design Museum

The designers are combining in this project their skills in design and insights in the (higher) education system, as they have been teaching at many renowned universities in Europe in the past. When children in elementary schools are educated both in theory, as well as practically on how to take care of our ressources, our future generations will be better prepared to solve the global challenges ahead of us.

You can participate in the Water School in lectures and discussions, which will take place every Friday from 16.00-18.00 o’clock at Studio Makkink & Bey, Marconistraat 85, Rotterdam.