The flush toilet hasn’t changed much since it was invented in 1596 by Sir John Harington. (Yes, the inventor of “The John” was named John. See also: Thomas Crapper.) Sure, there have been other advancements – waste treatment plants, underground sewers, septic systems – but these complicated, expensive, and hard-to-manage technologies don’t do much good in developing countries where 950 million people still have to defecate outdoors.
How a global public-private collaboration has successfully rolled back a little-known but devastating disease.
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