The Jeroen Ensink Memorial Prize Recipient 2016


Dr Jeroen H.J. Ensink  1974 -2015

The Jeroen Ensink Memorial Prize commemorates the life and work of Waterlines’ Editorial Board member Dr Jeroen H.J. Ensink.  Throughout his career, Dr Ensink sought to apply science and research to improve the lives of those who in the twenty-first century still live without access to safe drinking water and sanitation. He pursued this goal via different paths – as a practising public health engineer, as a young field researcher, as a doctoral student, as a senior investigator, and as a teacher and mentor – but always with the same clear and practical focus on solving the problem. Dr Ensink left behind him an impressive legacy of work but he also left a very personal mark on his many colleagues and friends in the water and sanitation sector.

Launched in 2016, this annual prize is to be awarded for an original non-commissioned paper submitted to Waterlines by a first-time author in the early stages of their career.

In 2016 a sub-committee drawn from the Editorial Advisory Board was evenly split in its recommendations in regard to two  papers that were published in Waterlines Volume 35 Number 2:

  • Payal Hathi, Dean Spears and Diane Coffey (2016) ‘Can collective action strategies motivate behaviour change to reduce open defecation in rural India?’ Waterlines35, 2, 118-135.
  • C Furlong, W T Gibson, A Oak, G Thakar, M Kodgire and R Patankar (2016) ‘Technical and user evaluation of a novel worm-based, on-site sanitation system in rural India’ Waterlines35, 2, 148-162.

Both papers addressed highly relevant sanitation issues, were well-written and presented, and provided important insights for policy and practice.  As the judging committee was split in its recommendation, the journal Editors provided the casting vote, and their recommendation was that the 2016 prize be awarded to Payal Hathi.

It is therefore with great pleasure that we announce the award of the 2016 Jeroen Ensink Memorial Prize to Payal Hathi. We also congratulate Claire Furlong and her team for a likewise excellent piece of research, just pipped to the post in this edition of the prize. In both cases, we realise that the authors form part of teams, and we likewise extend our congratulations to the co-authors.

Following Jeroen’s tragic death, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine established a Memorial Fund in his name to support students from sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia who are committed to improving public health in developing countries and wish to undertake the MSc Public Health for Development course.  Preference will be given to those applicants with experience and/or interest in the area of water, sanitation, hygiene and public health.

Applications and all necessary supporting documents must be received by 17.00 (GMT) on Sunday 2 April 2017 at the latest.

See more at:

Richard C. Carter and Sue Cavill

Waterlines Co-editors



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