Architecture, sanitation and COVID-19: design interventions in limited-resource settings (Accra, Ghana)

Deljana Iossifova, Joshua Baker, Hannah Byrom, Jian Gao, Zhe Han (Daryl) Law, Bethany Stewart, Yuxi Yang, Purva Dewoolkar, Yahia Gamal, Tarquin Nelson, Youcao Ren, Ulysses Sengupta

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

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Architectural design is at the heart of most (urban) transformation. However, architects have long abdicated from engaging with and progressing the design of the bathroom as the locus of intimate human practices. Localised COVID-19 outbreaks in the Global South have been linked with sanitation facilities that are shared between multiple households or strangers. In this chapter, we report on work developed as part of a research methods course for architecture students at the Manchester School of Architecture. We highlight the links between sanitation, public health and architecture in reviewing the literature on COVID-19 transmission pathways and identifying where and how they intersect with the design and maintenance of shared sanitation facilities. The focus is on shared urban sanitation in Accra, Ghana. We highlight where and how design could intervene and call for the reengagement of the architectural profession with the design of sanitation facilities and wider sanitation infrastructure systems, taking into account the needs of the majority world.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUrban Infrastructuring
Subtitle of host publicationreconfigurations, transformations and sustainability in the Global South
EditorsDeljana Iossifova, Alexandros Gasparatos, Stylianos Zavos, Yahya Gamal, Yin Long
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSpringer Nature
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9789811683527
ISBN (Print)9789811683510, 9789811683541
Publication statusPublished - 19 Apr 2022

Publication series

NameSustainable Development Goals
PublisherSpringer Nature


  • Architectural design
  • Urban transformation
  • Bathroom
  • COVID-19
  • Global South
  • Manchester School of Architecture
  • Sanitation
  • Public health
  • Transmission pathways
  • Accra
  • Ghana
  • Design intervention
  • Majority world

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Manchester Urban Institute


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