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Safe Water Optimization Tool

Safe Water Optimization Tool

Safe Water Optimization Tool

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Humanitarian operations have little in place to ensure that water quality complies with safety guidelines at the point of consumption, a significant oversight in response efforts.

Chlorination is the most widely practised water treatment technique used to supply safe water to refugees and internally displaced persons. If well managed, it can ensure residual contamination protection from the point of water dispensation to the point of water consumption in the household.

Humanitarian agencies prioritize water safety and routinely collect, monitor and report residual chlorination data. Little is done, however, to leverage this information to ensure that water quality complies with safety guidelines at the point of consumption, a significant oversight in response efforts.

The proper management and analysis of routinely collected residual chlorine data, using appropriate statistical techniques, will provide humanitarian field workers with high-quality, site-specific, and evidence-based operational guidance. The Safe Water Optimisation Tool (SWOT) is being developed with this primary objective. It aims to:

  • Improve public health by reducing the incidence of water borne disease
  • Establish site-specific guidance to ensure stricter compliance with chlorination standards at the household level
  • Improve accountability to populations and donors
  • Highlight problematic areas or practices towards which resources can be focused during water supply interventions or outbreak control

With Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders


Global Health & Humanitarianism


Data Science, Infectious Disease, Water


James Orbinski, OC, MSC, BSC, MD, MA, MCFP, Advisor
Syed Imran Ali, PhD, Founder and Lead
Matthew Arnold, MSc, Technical Advisor
Saad Ali, BASc, MEng, Engineering Modelling Developer
Ngqabutho Zondo, BDes, Graphic Designer
Mohamed Moselhy, Web Developer
James Brown,
Danny Salman,
Usman Khan, PhD, Artificial Neural Network Lead
Mike Spendlove, Software Solutions Advisor
Mike De Santi, Artificial Neural Network Developer
Jeff Fesselet, MSF Lead
Katie Thomson, Research Assistant
Kanishk Singh, Research Assistant



Related Work



Opportunity: P/T Junior Developer, Safe Water Optimization Tool Project | 26 January 2021

Opportunity: Technical Advisor - SWOT and Humanitarian Water Engineering | 15 December 2020

New Research Grant: Safe Water Optimization Tool awarded WASH Evidence Challenge Grant from the Humanitarian Innovation Fund/Elrha | 10 December 2020

Virtual Launch of Safe Water Optimization Tool | 7 December 2020

New Publication: Dahdaleh Institute researchers publish groundbreaking study on safe water and public health in refugee camps | 30 November 2020

Dahdaleh Institute Fellow Syed Imran Ali featured on the Globe and Mail as part of their "Stepping Up" series | 30 November 2020

Safe Water Optimization Tool featured in two national magazines | 16 November 2020

Safe Water Optimization Tool Launch | 15 November 2020

Innovative new data analytics technology to help improve access to safe water in refugee camps | 5 November 2020

Hiring: Graphic Designer, Safe Water Optimization Tool | 25 June 2020

SWOT at MSF Scientific Days Conference (virtual) | 11 May 2020

Dahdaleh Institute Members Contribute to Doctors Without Borders Internal Newsletter | 2 April 2020

SWOT Second All-Team Meeting Moves Project Forward | 25 February 2020

Opportunity: Junior Developer, Safe Water Optimization Tool | 15 January 2020

Dahdaleh Researchers in China, Ireland, Bangladesh and USA | 27 June 2019

WASH Project Showcased in London at Humanitarian Innovation Fund Meeting | 27 February 2019

Design is not just a pretty interface - and other lessons from Emergency Data Science | 20 February 2019

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