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IRC was founded in 1968 under an agreement between the World Health Organization and the Government of the Netherlands as a hub for information dissemination, a 'knowledge broker'.  We were the focal point of a worldwide network of collaborating institutions active in water supply, research and development.

During the 1980s and 90s, our work became focused on finding solutions through action research. We started to test innovative approaches to tackle complex problems. This work has taught us the value of taking a systems approach - involving everyone from the people on the ground to the people who hold the purse strings. That's why we now champion a move from short-term interventions to building long-term resilient local and national WASH systems.

Today, we're working with governments, NGOs, entrepreneurs and people around the world. Together we find and implement long-term solutions to make access to safe water and sanitation available for everyone, for good.

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