Bremen Overseas Research and Development Association

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Bremen Overseas Research and Development Association (BORDA)
Industry International development
Founded July 1977
Bremen, Germany
Headquarters Fahrenheitstraße 9, D-28359 Bremen, Germany
Area served
South Asia, Southeast Asia, Southern Africa, Latin America, Afghanistan
Key people
Stefan Reuter, Executive Director
Joachim Klaembt, President
Number of employees
15 in headquarters, 228 worldwide

The 'Bremen Overseas Research and Development Association' (BORDA) is a non-profit international development organization[1] headquartered in Bremen, Germany and regional offices in India, Indonesia, and Tanzania and several project offices within the regions. BORDA began its work in 1977, starting with its first project, “Technology Transfer of Biogas India-Ethiopia.” Since then it has been active in the delivery of basic needs services across the developing world, from India, to Indonesia, to Southern Africa.

Regional Offices[edit]

BORDA's main areas of operation are South Asia, including India and Afghanistan; Southeast Asia, which includes China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Philippines, Laos, Nepal and Cambodia; and Southern Africa, comprising the SADC region states of Lesotho, Zambia, South Africa, and Tanzania.

South Asia[edit]

BORDA has worked in India since 1979, making it the oldest region to be served by the organization. Programs implemented span the range of BORDA services, from Decentralized Wastewater Treatment (DEWATS) to Decentralized Energy Supplies.

Currently, BORDA - South Asia (BORDA-SA) works in nine Indian states, as well as neighboring regions. In Nepal BORDA co-operates with ENPHO. BORDA-SA and its partners have been contracted by international development organizations, including GIZ (Germany, in particular with the formerly GTZ and InWent), AusAid (Australia), and CEU, as well as national and local governments.

BORDA-SA supports a development cooperation network of 13 partner organizations, and by extension over 100 development experts in providing basic needs services. Over 110 DEWATS projects have been implemented, together with more than 65 Decentralized Energy Supplies and 60 Water Supplies.


Under the project title “Capacity building for local craftsmen and small medium enterprises for the sustainable implementation of Decentraliesed wastewater treatment systems (DEWATS)", BORDA runs project offices in Kabul and Herat since July 2012 with projects focused on vocational training. Many years of civil war and military intervention have brought about a massive destruction of infrastructure and the loss of capacities for civil reconstruction in Afghanistan. The current growth of the country‘s urban centres intensifies the need for feasible waste disposal solutions and increases the demand for trained staff in the water, sanitation and hygiene sector. BORDA Afghanistan promotes DEWATS through training programs and learning projects. An emphasis is given to glass-fibre reinforced plastic (GRFP) technologies, which reduce the risk and cost of implementation. BORDA provides also School-Based Sanitation (SBS), Health & Hygiene Education (HE) and Health Impact Assessments (HIA) in Afghanistan. So far, such services have been deployed for Schools, Hospitals and Mosques in the provinces Kabul, Bamyian, Balkh, Badakshan, Herat, and Nangahar. The objective of current projects is also the dissemination of Biogas technologies in cooperation with local partner organisations. In order to achieve sustainable coherent development, BORDA Afghanistan coordinates closely with national institutions such as the Ministry of Urban Development Affairs and the Environmental Protection Agency. For the vocational training of Afghan craftsmen and small-scale entrepreneurs BORDA cooperates with its local partners.

Southeast Asia[edit]

The main emphasis of BORDA SEA is DEWATS, in particular DEWATS CBS, SME's and the establishment of community-based organisations to provide sustainable operation and maintenance of the facilities. For upscaling the DESWAM (decentralized solid waste management for low income urban communities) service package BORDA SEA develops in co-operation with IDRC (International Research Development Centre) a pro poor carbon financing scheme under the Kyoto protocol.

In Indonesia, BORDA strongly emphasis on the enhancement of DESWAM as well as continuing the national program of community-based sanitation (SANIMAS) through the dissemination of DEWATS. Best practices are transferred into technical and social implementation standard as well as improving the involved human resources capacity through trainings and certification. The working group on Indonesian's national policy on water supply and sanitation is co-operating with BORDA and its local NGO partners as the main supporting network for community-based sanitation (CBS) with more than 500 implementations - including school-based sanitation and 14 DESWAM until the end of 2010. Local NGO partners are Balifokus, LPTP (Lembaga Pengembangan Teknologi Pedesaan - Center for Community-Based Environmental Technology) and B.E.S.T.

In the Philippines, BORDA is co-operating with BNS Philippines to introduce DEWATS as a viable option for waste water and environmental health problems in urban areas. Transferring know-how was conducted by Indonesian experts within the context of the BORDA south-south dissemination program. By now, BNS is a well known service provider for DEWATS in the Philippines. In Cambodia, specialists on DEWATS from Indonesia have been facilitated by BORDA and its partner organization ESC (Environmental Services Cambodia) to support in enhancing its capacity concerning DEWATS know-how. 3 DEWATS plants were inaugurated in 2010. Cooperations with national and international stakeholders will allow a start up of DEWATS as an application for waste water management in Cambodia mainly for communities, schools and hospitals.

In Vietnam, the BORDA maintains a branch office. Indonesian specialists support the capacity building at the Vietname Partners at Vietnam Institute for Water Resources concerning DEWATS applications. In earlier years the Organization implemented the Hydraulic Ram (HydRam) technology as well as the use of biogas, energy-saving stoves, and solar panels, supported the introduction of HPC's turbine pumps and Decentralized Waste Water Treatment System (DEWATS) technology.

In Laos, BORDA opened a project office in February, 2013, to implement DEWATS Service Packages in one of Southeast Asia's least developed countries. Institutional cooperation takes place at national and local level, particularly with the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, Department of Housing and Urban Planning, to promote both improved public health within low income urban and peri-urban settlements, and the reduction organic pollution of precious fresh water sources for the benefit of the Lao people and nation.

Southern Africa[edit]

In September 2006, BORDA started the SADC BNS program through co-operation with TED (Technology for Economic Development), a Lesotho-based NGO. In February 2010, a regional office was established in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The regional office coordinates the program activities, facilitates a constantly growing BNS network within the SADC region and links up with BNS networks in South and South-East Asia. Further more BORDA co-operates with the Water and Sanitation Association of Zambia (WASAZA), based in Lusaka. The BORDA BNS network develops and delivers the following service packages: Decentralized wastewater and urban sludge management, Community-Based Sanitation (CBS) with integrated wastewater treatment for community and public sanitation center and simplified sewer systems, School-Based Sanitation (SBS), Decentralized solid waste management (DESWAM), Biogas technologies, City Wide Sanitation Planning, Health & hygiene education (HE) and health impact assessment (HIA) and Quality management. All service packages are adapted to the conditions and requirements of the individual country and are supported by an adequate quality management system (QMS).

In February 2009 a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between BORDA and the Department of Water and Sanitation of the eThekwini Municipality (EWS) in the province KwaZulu Natal, South Africa for a demonstration and research DEWATS plant to be designed, constructed, commissioned and operated at Newlands-Mashu, Durban. In October 2010 the biogas settler and the anaerobic baffled reactors (ABR) were seeded with biomass.

In June 2010 EWS, HERING South Africa, the Pollution Research Group (PRG) of the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) and BORDA agreed to co-operate to achieve transfer of technology and know-how transfer for planning, installation and operation of prefabricated community ablution blocks (CABs) to offer improved sanitation services to communities. Based on this Public-Private-Partnership-Project BORDA SADC established a new office in Shakas Head, in the north of Durban. The premises are shared with HERING South Africa.


Decentralized Water Supply[edit]

• Remote mountainous villages in Asia are often located far above streams and rivers. • As mechanical supplies are scarce, water-lifting services by Hydraulic Rams provide a continuous water supply for essential sanitation & agriculture purposes. • Appropriate capacity building measures ensure that villagers handle management tasks in co-operation with partner organisations. • More than 1.200 project implementations facilitated.

Decentalized Wastewater Treatment (with DEWATS)[edit]

• DEWATS projects support micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises, institutions as well as public administrations in planning, designing and constructing effective, reliable, cost efficient and custom-made wastewater treatment systems. • Technical options within DEWATS are based on a modular and partly standardized design. DEWATS projects are carried out in Indonesia, India, China, Vietnam and the Philippines. • More than 150 project implementations facilitated

Community-Based Sanitation (CBS)[edit]

• Improved public health and reduced water pollution. • Cooperation with communities, NGOs, key-stakeholders and political decision-makers. • Holistic project framework: Besides improving sanitation infrastructure, operation and maintenance systems must be developed with participating stakeholders that ensure the sustainability of measures to improve basic sanitation and community hygiene. • More than 100 project implementations facilitated

Decentralized Solid Waste Management[edit]

• A regular and environmentally friendly collection & disposal of solid waste is demanded by residents and local governments of Asian cities. • Good Practices of solid waste management are characterized by the 3 R principles: „Reduce – Reuse – Recycle“ • Cooperation of residents, local waste pickers and local government departments is essential to plan lasting for decentralized solid waste management solutions. • More than 20 project implementations facilitated

Decentralized Energy Supply[edit]

• Decentralized power generation by MicroHydro Turbines that are powered by the flow-energy of mountain streams is a proven method to provide remote villages with electricity for productive and household purposes. • Partner organizations are trained to become „Micro-Utilities“ and act as vital service providers in marginalized regions. • More than 100 project implementations facilitated

Knowledge and Quality Management[edit]

• To achieve high quality standards of measures and services, local implementation capacity, competence and expertise must be built at an early stage. • Target groups and stakeholders need to be informed about different options in a systematic manner to ensure high participation during planning and management. • Available technical and management options are adapted to preferences of stakeholders and target groups • Increased efforts are made to standardize products and services in order to improve efficient dissemination.


  • BORDA's efforts in wastewater management have helped to improve the lives of over 1,000,000 people.
  • Training efforts have resulted in over 2000 engineers and technicians being successfully schooled in construction of low-cost sanitation measures.


BORDA has garnered press coverage in The Christian Science Monitor, The Hindi, The Jakarta Post, and a number of smaller local news sources.

Below is a selection of recent media coverage.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Federal Ministry for economic cooperation and development