If you have any questions please contact

Stephan Groves
Tel: +44 (0)1273 789912
E: stephan.groves@rethinkevents.com

Rethink Events Ltd
2nd Floor, Intergen House, 65-67 Western Road, Hove BN3 2JQ, UK

Rethink Events Ltd 2nd Floor, Intergen House, 65-67 Western Road, Hove BN3 2JQ, UK


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Day One — February 20 Morning

Welcome Remarks
Keynote Address
Water Leaders Debate: Exploring Current Needs and Changing Trends in the Water Sector

– What are the greatest challenges facing the water sector today and how can innovation meet this need?
– How are utilities changing their business models to reduce vulnerabilities? Where are we seeing the greatest shift in operations?
– Have big infrastructure projects gone out of vogue in a favour of solutions that can optimise and maintain existing assets?
– Which areas of technology are garnering most interest and uptake from utilities and industry? Is incremental innovation more attractive than advanced technologies?

Nigel Watson, CIO & Group Director of Information Services, Northumbrian Water Group, United Kingdom
Dharma Dharmabalan, General Manager, System Performance and Major Projects , TasWater, Australia

Under the Microscope: The Plastic Problem in Need of a New Technological Solution

– With the effects of microplastics widely acknowledged in marine ecosystems, how is conversation turning towards the role of wastewater treatment facilities?
– What’s the best way to capture and prevent microplastics from going into the waterways? How does responsibility lie on each player in the plastic supply chain?
– How can we equip the industry with the necessary tools to combat a contamination crisis? Tackling the problem requires treatment and separation of microplastics – where are these solutions and are they cost-effective at a large-scale deployment?
– What developments in terms of technology and regulation should we expect to see over the next few years?


Bruno Barillon, R&D Manager, Suez, France
Katrin Schuhen, Professor, University of Koblenz-Landau, Wasser 3.0, Germany
Molly Bingham, President & CEO, Orb Media, United States of America

Networking Coffee Break
Technology Acceleration: Who’s Driving the Innovation Engine?

– What new technology incubators are emerging? How successful are they in scaling solutions?
– Are internal R&D programs sufficient in fostering innovation, or is the industry looking to corporate venturing and mergers and acquisitions as a means of unlocking water-tech growth?
– What factors influence an investment decision or acquisition?
-What is the role of the private sector in making innovation more efficient and reducing the time to market and maturity of new technologies?

Session Chair:
Reinhard Hübner, Investment Manager, SKion, Germany
Jan Gooijer, Innovation Manager, Vitens, The Netherlands
Hara Prasad Nanda,Global Business Director, DOW Water & Process Solutions, United States of America
Ian Lane, Investment Director, Unilever Ventures, United Kingdom
Siah Keng Boon, ‎Chief Technology Officer, Sembcorp, Singapore

Roundtable Discussions
Networking Luncheon

Day One — February 20 Afternoon

Using Predictive Analytics to Sense Failure and Reduce Risk

– How can we leverage digitization to transform centralized, reactive utilities to create more intelligent, proactive environments? Have far are we from a future where all infrastructure networks are linked to generate synergies and forecast operational decisions based on data?
– What key areas of technology have the power to transform the traditional utility model in terms of asset maintenance and water supply? Will the trend be towards improving efficiency and application of existing technologies or should we expect to see new innovations emerge?
– Who are the advocates of artificial intelligence, machine learning and robotics, and how can these innovations be effectively integrated into operational procedures?

Carmelo García Santana, Director of Innovation, La Empresa Metropolitana de Abastecimiento y Saneamiento de Aguas de Sevilla, (EMASESA), Spain
Steve Kaye, Head of Innovation, Anglian Water, United Kingdom
Trey Clark, Director of Strategy, Uptake Technologies, United States of America
Adam Armer, ‎IoT Global Business Development & Innovation Manager, Vodafone, United Kingdom

Masterclass in Deep Learning: How AI is Set to Disrupt the Water Industry

Thouheed Abdul Gaffoor, ‎Chief Executive Officer, Emagin, United States of America

Technology Showcase
Networking Coffee Break
Getting Deals Done with Innovative Procurement Models

– What alternative project delivery models are emerging between utilities, engineering consultancies and technology providers to accelerate the development and implementation of new technologies? What incentive mechanisms have proven to work?
– What project structures are favoured by municipalities who are looking to manage and mitigate technology risk in large-scale water projects?
– How are different countries approaching procurement? What are the key characteristics of a successful partnership?

Wim Drossaert, Chief Executive Officer, Dunea, Netherlands
Jon Loveday, Group Commercial & Transformation Director, Thames Water, United Kingdom
David Tyler, Associate Director, Water & Wastewater Sector Specialist, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, United Kingdom

To Nutrient Recovery and Beyond: Advancing Towards a Renewable Energy Future

– Who is leading the way in nutrient recovery? Is regulation hampering or driving innovation in nutrient management and removal?
– With the newest wave of next generation recovery technologies coming to the fore, is there scope to diversify the type of nutrients recovered and their potential usage?
– Are biosolids the solution to reducing carbon emissions in wastewater treatment? How does sludge-to-energy compare to other methods of renewable energy generation?
– How are energy-optimised utilities justifying investment in technology based on anticipated returns and cost savings? What areas of technology offer the greatest potential?

Ulf Nyberg, Head of Wastewater Treatment, VA SYD, Sweden
Jon Brigg, Manager of Innovation, Yorkshire Water, United Kingdom
Andrea Lanuzza, Operations Director – Waste Water and Sewage, Gruppo CAP, Italy

Close of Summit

Day Two — February 21 Morning

Welcome Remarks
Building Resilience in Response to Crisis and Weather Extremes

– As feast or famine scenarios become the new norm, how are different cities with traditionally stable climates adapting to and reducing the impact of more frequent weather extremes?
– What solutions are emerging to reduce severity, disruption and cost of drought and flooding? How can technological innovation help to build resilience and mitigate climate risks?
– What have we learned from recent disasters? Has this changed standard practice?

Session Chair:
Mark Lane, Director, The UK Water Partnership, United Kingdom
João Nuno Mendes, President, Águas de Portugal, Portugal
Joke Cuperus, CEO, PWN, Netherlands
Peter Perry, COO, Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water, United Kingdom
Bryan Harvey, Vice President, CH2M, United Kingdom

Sponge Cities: China’s Solution to Flooding and Drought
Technology Showcase
Networking Brunch

Day Two — February 21 Afternoon

Assessing the Viability of Alternative Water Sources for Future Supply

– What are the drivers for adopting water reuse programmes across different regions? What can we learn from their success and where do we expect to see the biggest growth in water reclamation?
– What are the critical factors holding projects back, and how can we overcome these roadblocks?
– What trends are emerging in alternative water treatment methods for both utilities and industries? Where can we find robust and affordable zero liquid discharge systems?

Anthony Tanti, Executive Director, Water Services Corporation, Malta
Denis Bilodeau, President, Orange County Water District, United States of America
Matt Rolls, Regional Director, EMEA – Municipal Division, Evoqua Water Technologies, United Kingdom

Unlocking Corporate Water Stewardship in the Circular Economy

– With water stewardship topping agendas worldwide, how are leading industry players addressing resource constraints and sustainable water management in regions in which they operate?
– How can circular economy approaches be effectively adopted to minimize impact and protect supply in water stressed areas?
– What are the challenges and where do the greatest opportunities for innovation lie?

When Capital Doesn’t Follow Opportunity: How to Flood the Market with Water-Tech

– We cannot live without water, hence there is a clear and obvious demand for solutions to solve the global water crisis. What’s the hold up in bringing solutions to market and how are players successfully approaching investment across different regions?
– What areas of technology are most in demand? Which markets are most lucrative?
– How can the investment community offer start-ups a better chance at success when transitioning from pilot phase to large-scale implementation? What’s your survival guide for the “valley of death”?

Session Chair:
Fiona Griffith, Group Director, Isle Utilities, United Kingdom
Arne Morteani, Partner, ETF Partners, United Kingdom
Nityen Lal, Founder and Managing Partner, Icos Capital, The Netherlands
Luke Rajah, Investment Director, OMBU Group, United Kingdom

Close of Summit

A half day seminar exploring today’s most critical needs in flood mitigation, management and resilience on a global scale. The workshop will feature insight from international markets on their specific flood risks and challenges, panel debates on accelerating the development of products in this field, in addition to pitching sessions from innovators who will showcase their flood-tech solutions. http://worldwatertechinnovation.com/flood-tech-workshop/