Reinvented Toilet - ISO Standards Development

2015 - 2018 • American National Standards Institute (ANSI)


To develop internationally recognized standards for Reinvented Toilets that will facilitate widespread deployment of low-cost, safe and effective toilets in areas of need worldwide.


The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations (UN) both maintain that no one should lack access to a safe and hygienic toilet. To support this goal, ANSI will manage, under the auspices of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), a process to develop an international standard for next-generation toilet technologies (Reinvented Toilets) that will facilitate widespread deployment of low-cost, safe, and effective toilets in areas of need worldwide. ISO is an independent, non-governmental membership organization – of which ANSI is the U.S. member body - and a prominent developer of voluntary International Standards.

ANSI will lead two phases of work geared towards gathering international stakeholder consensus and advancing a globally accepted standard for next generation toilets. The first will include the identification of contributing stakeholders for the international standards effort, as well as the facilitation of an international stakeholders’ workshop that will lead to the development of an ISO International Workshop Agreement (IWA), an ISO publication. The ISO IWA may serve as an interim solution while a consensus-based international standard is developed. The subsequent phase will include the necessary steps to develop and advance a global consensus standard for next-generation toilets, through the proposal, establishment and leadership of a new technical committee in ISO.

• Current state of affairs: As of February 2016, the ISO Technical Management Board has approved ANSI’s proposal for the IWA, and ANSI is moving ahead with plans for the international stakeholder’s workshop. The new work item proposal (NWIP) to establish a new ISO project committee is currently out for ballot amongst all ISO members, with the final vote expected by April 25, 2016.

• Biggest successes so far: To date, the feedback from affected stakeholders and international experts has been very positive. ANSI is working closely with TÜV SÜD to align the goals and timelines of our initiatives, so that all of our early milestones have been met on schedule or early.

• Identified challenge/opportunity: As with any standards development process, it is important to have balanced representation from affected stakeholders around the world. Without balanced participation, it will be difficult to ensure the global relevance of the IWA, where stakeholders directly participate. To mitigate this risk, ANSI and TÜV SÜD are identifying relevant stakeholders at the beginning of the process and continuously promoting these activities via available channels. Once the project moves to ISO standards development, participation is via ISO member countries. At the international level, the balance must be achieved among developed and developing countries, different geographic regions and ensuring that the countries for whom next Reinvented Toilets are most relevant are participating.

Countries of activity

Location of main activity


1. Development of an ISO IWA (International Workshop Agreement) document by stakeholders representing many countries and backgrounds for use as an interim solution in the market as technologies are commercialized.
2. Advancement of an ISO international standard for next-generation toilet technologies, or “sustainable non-sewered sanitation”, utilizing the ISO consensus process and network of member bodies from around the globe.

Objectives: This work will result in internationally recognized standards for Reinvented Toilets that will facilitate widespread deployment of low-cost, safe, and effective toilets in areas of need worldwide

Further information

Research or implementation partners: TÜV SÜD, a global technical service organization active in testing, inspection and certification, headquartered in Germany and operating in many countries, including Singapore, is currently working on a draft private standard in this area, also with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (see their project entry in the SuSanA project database). ANSI anticipates that the TÜV SÜD standard will form the basis of the IWA and subsequent ISO deliverables.

Grant size in July 2015: $ 2,023,928

Contact information

Leslie McDermott
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Filter tags

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Global North America Private sector, including social enterprises Product design and engineering Technology comparisons Toilets or urinals (user interface)


Uploaded by:
danijela milosevic (milli)

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