Cairo has many urgent urban challenges such as electricity, water, waste and youth unemployment. In this innovation program we will try to connect two of them to explore solutions towards resolving them.
Much has been written about the waste issue in Cairo, such as this excerpt from the Huffington Post: “It is a landfill of interwoven problems. Rival collectors vying for the big business of trash fight over turf that used to be parceled out in an orderly way among a fixed number of garbage-collecting clans. Layers of corrupt and inefficient bureaucracy choke the system. The collapse of police forces in the revolution in early 2011 means that no one is enforcing what few rules there are.
As a result, Cairenes end up dumping much of their daily output of 17,000 tons of garbage on the street.
‘We have designed an unsustainable system for the city,” said Laila Iskandar, an expert in waste management. “It is a chain and no one thinks of the chain. Only the end point … Out of sight out of mind.’”