Talent Development, Industrial Water Solutions and Commercialisation of Technologies Take Centre Stage at SIWW 2014
New elements such as the Hydro-gen and Innovation Pavilion, as well as expanded discussions on industrial water solutions are among the key highlights of the event - aimed at co-creating innovative water solutions.
Next week, the Singapore International Water Week (SIWW) will bring together more than 20,000 attendees and 850 participating companies, who have a collective interest in finding innovative solutions to the world’s water challenges.
Held in conjunction with the fourth World Cities Summit and the second CleanEnviro Summit Singapore, the sixth edition of SIWW will focus on industrial water solutions, talent development and the commercialisation of innovative water technologies and solutions.
Talent development and entrepreneurship
Developed with the objective of nurturing and uncovering the next generation of water leaders and entrepreneurs, Hydro-gen (short for “Hydro Generation”), is the youth and talent development programme at SIWW 2014. A key thrust under Hydro-gen is the HydroPrenenur Programme (HPP), SIWW’s first accelerator programme for water technologies. Conducted in collaboration with the National University of Singapore’s Lean LaunchPad and the Founder Institute, it is designed to inculcate an entrepreneurial and innovation culture, and help aspiring water entrepreneurs develop water start-ups and commercialise their technologies.
Under HPP, participants will undergo a nine-week industry-oriented entrepreneurship and development programme with experienced mentors including Nigel Wylie, Managing Director of Environmental Dynamics International (EDI Asia); Simon Dale, Head of Technology & Innovation at SAP Asia Pacific & Japan; Vinnie Lauria, Founding Partner of Golden Gate Ventures; Bryan Long, Founder of The Testing Ground; Mike Holt, Managing Partner of Get2Volume – a Singapore and Silicon Valley technology company incubation and advisory firm; and Kris Childress, CEO of Nanothree.
More than 50 participants have been successfully enlisted in HPP, which will culminate in the Hydro Pitch Day, when shortlisted teams will pitch their ideas before an audience of global water companies, venture capitalists and potential clients, to obtain the support required to kick start their ventures.
Another key component of Hydro-gen is the Young Water Leaders Summit (YWLS), which brings together young water leaders from around the world to engage in discussions on global water issues, empowering them to be effective catalysts for change in their regions and the world. Selected participants will represent the voice of the youth in the Water Leaders Summit, providing an opportunity for young water leaders to interact and share their ideas with established global water leaders from the public and private sectors.
“It is a natural and important step for youths to be involved in these programmes and discussions, as water challenges will always be an ongoing concern, and the solutions discussed will have an impact on the future. Through Hydro-gen, we want to nurture and develop the next generation of water leaders and entrepreneurs by providing opportunities for them to be involved in discussions of real-world concerns, network and learn from the industry’s best, as well as to inject fresh perspectives and ideas into the discussions,” said Maurice Neo, Managing Director of Singapore International Water Week.
Commercialisation of water technologies
In support of Singapore’s position as a global hydrohub and marketplace for sustainable solutions, SIWW will also continue to feature the TechXchange as well as the inaugural Water Innovations Pavilion at the Water Expo, to shine the spotlight on innovative technologies. The objective of these programmes is to connect water technology start-ups with potential investors and funding schemes, buyers with sellers, to promote the commercialisation of game-changing technologies.
Participating companies at this year’s TechXchange include Aquanos (Israel), Aquaporin (Singapore), Baleen Filters (Austrialia), Ceraflo (Singapore), Cerahelix (USA), Hydrovision (Singapore), Lentikat’s (Czech Republic), MEDAD (Singapore), Puralytics (USA), UniQuest/Lodomat (Australia) and Water Optics Technology (Singapore).
In addition to pitching to international investors and buyers on Hydro Pitch Day, participating companies will also showcase their disruptive technologies and prototypes at the Innovations Pavilion at the Water Expo. The sold-out Water Expo 2014 is 35% bigger than the previous edition in 2012, with more than 850 participating companies and 24 Group Pavilions exhibiting over 23,000sqm of covered space. Other new Pavilions at the Water Expo include the US Department of Commerce, Denmark and France.
Industrial water solutions
With the industrial water sector, which ranks second in global water consumption, accounting for about 25% of global water demand, SIWW 2014 will continue to focus on the need for thought leadership and sharing of best practices in industrial water solutions through platforms such as the Industrial Water Solutions Forum.
Besides looking at issues such as efficient water use in the manufacturing sector to help companies achieve productivity and savings, the forum will also match-make industrial water users with water technology companies, start-ups and academics.
SIWW 2014 will feature expanded discussions on industrial water solutions that cut across different levels – thought leadership, technical and business solutions. There will also be more focused and dedicated discussion tracks, spanning Financial, Chemical and Refinery, Electronics, Pharmaceutical, Mining, Food & Beverage, Oil and Gas and Industrial Parks sectors. These discussions will take place at various SIWW events including the Water Convention, Hot Issues Workshop, TechXchange and the booths of exhibiting companies at the Water Expo.
Speaking at the SIWW 2014 Media Preview, Chew Men Leong, Chief Executive of PUB and Executive Director of the Environment and Water Industry Programme Office, said, “We have always placed great value in sustainable solutions such as water reuse and low-energy seawater desalination as they have enabled us to enhance our water security despite our physical constraints. That is one of the reasons for SIWW to focus on innovative and sustainable water solutions with real-world applications and benefits. Our emphasis is on advancing global thought leadership in water management; creating a conducive, competitive marketplace for the entire water value chain to meet and collaborate on innovative water solutions; and facilitating avenues for the commercialisation of water technologies.”
“Over the years, SIWW and Singapore’s water industry have grown in tandem with one another. We strive to make SIWW a relevant and global platform for delegates to ink deals and partnerships, and collaborate on innovative solutions. This being our first show after two years, we can expect a stronger turnout with more high level delegations. Participants can look forward to a quality line-up of speakers, more innovative solutions at the Expo and more in-depth discussions,” Mr Chew added.
Some of the key speakers at SIWW include Angel Gurría, Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD); Benedito Braga, President of the World Water Council; Chen Lei, Minister for Water Resources, China; HE Rashid Ahmed Mohammed Bin Fahad, Minister of Environment and Water, United Arab Emirates; Jean-Louis Chaussade, CEO, Suez Environnement; Kirsten Brosbøl, Minister for the Environment, Denmark; and Melanie Schultz van Haegen, Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and the Environment.
The sixth Singapore International Water Week will be held from 1st to 5th June 2014 at the Sands Expo & Convention Center at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.