Water Innovation: Bridging Gaps, Creating Opportunities

We look forward to welcoming you to the 2017 EIP Water Conference this autumn in Porto!

This year’s theme is “Water Innovation: Bridging Gaps, Creating Opportunities”. Innovative solutions to address major European and global water challenges will be on the table. At the same time, other issues to be explored will include market opportunities for these innovations, both within and outside Europe, and how to remove barriers by advancing and leveraging existing solutions.

The 4th EIP Water Conference will be hosted by the Municipality of Porto and powered by the European Innovation Partnership on Water (abbreviated to “EIP Water”), supported by the European Commission and the government of Portugal.

Who will attend?

A rich mixture of presentations, expert panels, debates and competitions await you as together we bridge the remaining innovation gaps in Europe’s water sector, help create opportunities and build strong partnerships among participants such as:

  • Political leaders at European, national and local level;
  • Regulators;
  • Decision makers and technicians from utilities, industry and agriculture;
  • Researchers from universities and I&D centres;
  • Solution providers and innovators;
  • Start-ups and SMEs;
  • Investors.

Why Attend?

Among the keynote speakers, we expect Rui Moreira, the Mayor of Porto, and João Pedro Matos Fernandes, Portugal’s Minister of the Environment, to welcome some 600-700 guests from all over Europe to Portugal and to the Invicta city (Porto).

Karmenu Vella, European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, will furthermore provide insights into environment and innovation work carried out in the EU.

The 2017 EIP Water Conference has five key objectives:

  • Improving access to finance and markets for innovations;
  • Facilitating easier procurement of innovation for end users;
  • Developing regulation that is conducive to innovation;
  • Sharing best practice and results from demonstration and test sites;
  • Building European-wide partnerships among stakeholders and contributors.

The extensive exhibition will allow participants to experience innovations available today and to see what is around the corner as start-ups and established companies go head-to-head and pitch their latest ideas at the Splash Innovation Stage to find out who's got talent.

The conference is free to attend, but space is limited. So please reserve the 27th and 28th of September for this event and register now to secure your seat!

More details will be sent to you as the programme evolves.


João Pedro Matos Fernandes

Minister of Environment of Portugal


Diane d’Arras

President, International Water Association


Francis Li

Executive Director and VP, Beijing Enterprises Water Group


Carlos Borrego

Director, Department of Environment and Planning, Univ. Aveiro


João Nuno Mendes

CEO, Águas de Portugal Group


Filipe Araújo

Porto City Councillor


Frederico Fernandes

CEO, Águas do Porto


Gaëtane Suzenet

Managing Partner, Global Impact Partners


Frank Rogalla

Director of Innovation and Technology, Aqualia


Arjan Boogaards

Senior VP & General Manager, Nalco Water Europe & MEA


António Câmara

Professor, Co-Founder YDreams (YGroup)


Jaime Melo Baptista

Coordinator of the Lisbon International Centre for Water


Naom Komy

Vice President of Strategy and Corporate Development, Miya Group


José Melo Bandeira

Country Manager, Veolia Portugal


Enrique Castiblanques

Chairman of the Board, Indaqua


João Faria Feliciano



Jorge Malfeito

R&D Director, Acciona Agua


Manuel Alvarinho

President and Founder, Aquashare Association


Tomas Michel

President, WssTP


Aurora Seco

Professor, University of Valencia /"Water Circle" EIP Water Action Group


Gabriel Anzaldi

Director, Eurecat’s Smart Systems Unit


Mona Arnold

Business Development Manager, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland


Maria João Freitas

Sociologist and Research Officer, LNEC


Joan García

Professor, Polytechnic University of Catalonia /"NatureWat" EIP Water Action Group


Albert Jansen

Wetsus / "Industrial Water Reuse" EIP Water Action Group


Christian Loderer

Project and Innovation Manager, Berlin Centre of Competence for Water


Will Maize

Senior Analyst, Bluefield Research


Eva Martinez

Responsible for the Smart Services Area of the Innovation and Technology Department, Aqualia


José Saldanha Matos

President, European Water Association


Robert Schröder

Member of Cabinet, Commissioner Moedas for Research, Science and Innovation, European Commission


Petr Janak



Alexandra Gonçalves da Cunha

Head of the Economic and Financial Analysis Department at the Water and Waste Services Regulation Authority


Esa Falkenroth

Senior Information Architect, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute



Networking Breakfast

Rui Moreira, Mayor of Porto (tbc)
Ferd Crone, Mayor of Leeuwarden (tbc)
João Pedro Matos Fernandes, Minister of Environment of Portugal

Carlos Borrego, Director, Department of Environment and Planning, University of Aveiro
João Nuno Mendes, CEO, Águas de Portugal Group
Diane d’Arras, President, International Water Association (IWA)
Ricardo Costa, General Director of Information, Impresa Group (tbc)

Water and the Circular Economy, Part 1 – Industry

How water is crucial to performance and what industries do to safeguard resource number 1.

Water in the food and beverage industry. Taylor’s water stewardship programme.

Adrian Bridge, CEO, Taylor’s Port Wine (tbc)

Mining water: pollutant or resource?

Mona Arnold, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

Water reuse and energy savings in the textile industry. How the ECWRTI project has used electro coagulation and membranes to reduce mill water consumption by 90%.

Andreas ten Cate, Institute for Sustainable Process Technology (tbc)

The hottest water innovations in industry.

Albert Jansen, EIP Water “Industrial Water Reuse” Action Group (tbc)

How can digitalisation boost efficiency and close loops?

Arjan Boogaards, Senior Vice President and General Manager Europe & Middle East Africa for Water & Process Services, Nalco (tbc)

Networking Lunch

Key challenges to innovation when implementing European water directives and how it is done in Portugal.

Joanna Drake, DG Environment, European Commission
Ministry of the Environment, Portugal (tbc)
José Saldanha Matos, President, European Water Association
Robert Schroder, Cabinet Member, Research, Science and Innovation, European Commission

Showcase of innovative solutions from EIP Water, Horizon 2020 and Life projects.

Demonstration site case studies.

Digital solutions for water.

Maria João Freitas, Sociologist and researcher, LNEC
Frederico Fernandes, CEO, Águas do Porto
Uta Wehn, Associate Professor of Water Innovation Studies, IHE Delft Institute for Water Education
Piers Clark, Chair, Isle Utilities

An experiment in collective awareness, perceptions and implications.

How can serious gaming and social media increase citizen engagement?

How modern utilities are engaging with their customers.

The pains of being an innovator – or the good, the bad and the ugly of water innovation.

Piers Clark, Chair, Isle Utilities

The Water Campus in Leeuwarden – hot-bed of innovation and commercialisation.

Cees Buisman, Scientific Director, Wetsus

Water innovation hubs and testing facilities around the world.

Tom Baur, EIP Water secretariat

The Porto Innovation Hub: Innovation in the transforming of the city.

Filipe Araújo, Porto City Councillor (tbc)

The Lund Water Innovation Accelerator.

Kenneth Persson, Professor, Sweden Water Research

Using digitalisation to boost innovation with open data ecosystems

Open Science, Open Innovation and Open to the World

Robert Schroder, Cabinet Member, Research, Science and Innovation, European Commission

Making open innovation a reality with SWITCH-ON

Lorna Little, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute

Palácio da Bolsa

Water and the Circular Economy, Part 2 – Agriculture

How the need for water security is driving multi-sector governance.

Guidelines for the reuse of water in agriculture.

Water and Agriculture, Water in Agriculture

Nutrients, pesticides and over-abstraction – the key challenges in agricultural water use.

Innovative solutions to enhance water sustainability in food production.

Nutrient Recovery

Showcasing innovative techniques to safeguard precious resources.

The top 5 ways to make the water sector attractive to investors.

Gaëtane Suzenet, Managing Partner, Global Impact Partners

New PPP models to develop, maintain, retrofit and finance resilient water infrastructure.

How the public sector is championing innovation.

Águas do Porto

Please Disrupt! Open for Business as un-usual. How to make a success of start-ups.

Gaëtane Suzenet, Managing Partner, Global Impact Partners

The Water Business: Markets, Opportunities and Employment

The value of water.

Tomas Michel, President, Water Supply and Sanitation Technology Platform (WssTP)

Connecting market needs to innovations.

Will Maize, Senior Research Analyst, Bluefield Research

Featured markets for water innovations:

  • China;
  • Francis Li, Executive Director and Vice President, Beijing Enterprises Water Group

  • India;
  • Amarjit Singh, Ministry of Water Resources (tbc)

  • Portuguese-speaking countries:
  • Manuel Alvarinho, President of the Executive Board, Aquashare Association from Mozambique

The urban water cycle – from smart water to resource recovery.

A framework for urban water governance.

Stef Koop, Researcher, KWR Watercycle Research Institute

The Porto City Blueprint.

Kees van Leeuwan, Principal Scientist, KWR Watercycle Research Institute

The Urban Water Atlas – a panorama of water management in European cities.

Bernd Gawlik, Joint Research Centre, European Commission

How traditional wastewater treatment plants are becoming resource factories.

How is smart water key to a smart city?

Site Visits

Up to two choices possible per person.

Guided site visits to a choice of six technical facilities or the Porto historic city centre (parallel to the Mayors & Water Conference and Water & People programmes).