Photo of Suliasi Batikawai

Senior Research Assistant

Suliasi Batikawai

Suli is an experienced former Environmental Health Officer with over 13 years of expertise specialising in Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) programs in Fiji and the Pacific region. He spent ten years with the Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MoHMS), leading the WASH program for six years across normalcy and emergency periods (i.e., natural disasters). In this role, he coordinated the Fiji WASH Cluster and spearheaded various projects aimed at improving WASH in healthcare facilities, schools, rural and informal settlements, and disaster-affected settings. His leadership in developing essential WASH policies, guides, standards, and key committees for WASH governance, along with innovative WASH items for post-disaster circumstances, implementing national WASH surveys in healthcare facilities, and facilitating capacity-building initiatives, has significantly advanced WASH practices in Fiji.
He also has extensive consultancy experience with United Nations (UN) agencies and business corporations. His consultancy roles have included implementing key WASH initiatives, drafting Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs), reviewing knowledge products, organizing and co-facilitating the Pacific WASH Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Goal 6 Meeting, and developing engagement strategies.
Currently, Suliasi is a PhD candidate at the University of Queensland (UQ), where his research focuses on analyzing the influence of climate change and modifiable factors (i.e., behavioral, socio-cultural, and environmental) on infectious diseases.. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Health from the University of the South Pacific (USP) and has completed several professional development programs, including RedR Australia training in essential humanitarian practices and WASH in emergencies.
Areas of Interest
  • Developing, implementing, and evaluating WASH initiatives in various settings, including rural and informal settlements, healthcare facilities, and schools.
  • Engaging stakeholders and fostering collaborative governance structures, including developing guiding documents (policies, standards, and guides) to enhance WASH program viability and sustainability.
  • Designing WASH products and implementing WASH responses during and after natural disasters, such as tropical cyclones, to ensure rapid recovery and resilience building.
  • Collaborating and conducting research on the intersection of WASH, environmental health, and public health to understand and mitigate the burden of infectious diseases.
Suliasi is actively involved in projects with the International Water Centre (IWC) and is recognised for his contributions to the field through various publications he collaborated on and his participation in key international conferences and workshops.