Young Professional Series: Tomohito Okuda gives online talk on “Urban Sanitation and International Development: Future of Decentralized Infrastructure”

Satsuki-kai America, Friends of UTokyo (FUTI), and FUTI Alumni Association jointly presented an online dialogue with Mr. Tomohito Okuda, who is pursuing a joint degree at Harvard University’s Master in Public Administration in International Development and MIT’s MBA program. Tomohito is a 2020 recipient of Ito Foundation USA-FUTI scholarship. 

This is the third talk in FUTI’s Young Professional Series created to feature young alumni of UTokyo. It was attended by 10 UTokyo undergraduates who were “online visiting” New York under the Taiken Program as well as over 15 alumni.


The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the vulnerability of densely populated areas to infectious diseases as well as the existence of vast disparities in modern society. While public health in cities in developing countries plays an important role in controlling the spread of infectious diseases, the provision of viable public health is one of the most difficult development challenges to solve. Especially in urban slums, it is often difficult to construct even the basic sewerage system due to costs, legal and other constraints. In his talk, Mr. Okuda discussed his experience during his fellowship at Sanergy, which not only builds toilets but also collects and converts waste into fertilizers and insect-based animal feeds. His talk also included a discussion of the latest trends in infrastructure development. []

For Mr. Okuda’s bio in Japanese, please see the Japanese version of this article.