The second European Water Technology Week in Leeuwarden, Netherlands, is set to unite business and innovation leaders from companies, universities and governments to help accelerate the adoption of innovative water technologies globally.
Connecting water clusters
Dutch city Leeuwarden, the home of the iconic 'WaterCampus' of the Netherlands, will soon play host to business and innovation leaders from companies, universities and governments for the second European Water Technology Week (EWTW 2022).
Featuring an inspiring mixture of science and business-related topics, the second EWTW takes place from September 19-22.
EWTW features the Wetsus Congress 2022, an international business program initiated by Water Alliance, a vibrant network floor and a day with tours where participants can experience various innovative water projects.
One of the key themes will be connecting the different water hubs and clusters internationally.
“Our goal is to speed up the internationalization by connecting companies with innovative technologies.”
Speaking to Aquatech Online, Hein Molencamp, managing director of the Water Alliance, said:
“Scaling water tech innovation is a long and costly journey most of the time, and it acquires perseverance and a positive attitude of the entrepreneur, especially for the large number of start-ups and scale-ups. Besides launching your innovation in your home market, it will be crucial to scale up to international markets.
“Therefore, Water Alliance has built up an extensive number of contacts with other water clusters and water hubs in the world. Not just in Europe but also globally. Our goal is to speed up internationalization by connecting companies with innovative technologies to clusters and hubs in our international network.”
International water clusters, accelerators and hubs from France, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Singapore, China, Canada, USA will be present at the EWTW stages and networking floor.
“Because also those clusters have member companies who are interested in getting in touch with innovations from the Netherlands. They can also define local challenges with end customers and connect interesting technology from the Netherlands,” he added.
An international audience
The first edition of the EWTW took place in 2018 and attracted 1000 participants from 38 countries. While the 2020 edition was postponed due to the Covid-19 situation, the 2022 agenda is packed with 26 parallel sessions, five plenary sessions and 110 international speakers.
- Anna Panagopoulou, director for European Research area & innovation, directorate general research & innovation, European Commission
- Prof Anita Hardon, – WUR & chair NWO Domain Social Sciences and Humanities
- Dr Lan Wang-Erlandsson, Stockholm Resilience Centre, Sweden
- Rene Buck, CEO Buck Consultants International/BCI Global.
Other activities will also take place during the breaks on the networking floor, such as WaterMatch 2022 – an international water technology brokerage event. This will provide an opportunity to network with companies, researchers, knowledge institutes and government representatives in one-on-one meetings.
The urgency for water solutions
The event takes place after an unprecedented summer drought across much of Europe, including in the historically perceived "water-abundant" Netherlands. With water security front of mind for many, the Water Alliance managing director believes this should result in more urgency.
“Recent droughts not only in the Netherlands or Europe but globally show the huge urgency on the topics of availability on clean and safe water," he said, referencing the WaterCampus in Leeuwarden.
He says the “innovation ecosystem” is the perfect place to gather water professionals as it has been designed to “stimulate the creation of new innovations in water tech”.
The WaterCampus was created as a unique cooperation between research, knowledge institutes, governments and business, with worldwide involvement and connections.
“Recent droughts not only in the Netherlands or Europe but globally show the huge urgency on the topics of availability on clean and safe water.”
Concluding on what he hopes visitors will take away from the event, Molenkamp added: “I hope visitors will take an active role during their participation at EWTW and go home with new connections, new ideas and above all, new inspiration.
“This is much needed so that together we can accelerate, cooperate and speed up promising ideas to create more innovative solutions for the rapidly increasing water challenges in the world.”
More information on the European Water Technology Week can be found here.
- Accelerating solutions with the Netherlands innovation ecosystem
- Hubs to hubs: declaration unites global water tech clusters