Semi-plenary session (from 09:00 to 10:50)

Water for all

Chairs: Dr. Ger Bergkamp (ARCOWA) & Dr. Inge Genné (VITO)

Urban water sector technological transitions and innovations towards 2030

To accelerate significant transitions in the water sector, new mechanisms of collaboration between businesses, technology suppliers, government and other stakeholders are needed. At the same time, different incentives, regulatory changes and financing will be required throughout the stages of adopting technology innovations. What are the latest experiences with new collaborative mechanisms for water transitions, and what are successful examples?

Alexis de Kerchove
Transforming agriculture water use through new technologies and innovations

As agriculture water use is the largest human consumptive water use world-wide, a transformation in the way we manage water for agriculture production is urgently required. Which technologies and innovations can reduce agriculture water abstraction and use, and start restoring some of the depleted resources? Which policy, regulation, standards and incentives are needed to have new technologies & innovations in farming water practices being adopted around the world?

Jippe Hoogeveen
Interactive panel discussion

Moderators: Dr Ger Bergkamp and Dr Inge Genne


- Veronica Manfredi, Director, Quality of Life, Directorate-General for Environment, European Commission (Europe)

- Andre Fourie, Global Director: Water Sustainability, AB InBev (USA)

- Lasse Moller, Senior Economist / Private Sector Development Advisor in the Financing for Sustainable Development (FSD) Team, OECD (France)

Ger Bergkamp Inge Genné Veronica Manfredi Andre Fourie Lasse Moller

Deep dive (from 14:00 to 15:20)

Smart water grids: can we overcome the Water-Energy Nexus?

Chairperson: Inge Genné

Water related events such as flooding and water scarcity are year after year considered as one of the most important risks for the global economy (Global Risk report – World Economic Forum, 2019).

Our current interventions to tackle these challenges get however stuck in symptom management (e.g. compensating damage, creating large water reservoirs, strengthening dykes, etc.) without sufficient insight into i) the root causes, resulting problems elsewhere or even strengthening them and ii) how the water system interacts with other systems such as the energy system, ... which would considerably broaden the playing field in finding solutions. This requires systems thinking that takes account of the interdependencies and develops solution pathways for a transition towards a resilient water system.

The interdependencies between water and energy are commanding increasing attention. Water is used throughout the energy industry for producing fuels, cooling thermal power plants, and generating electricity in hydropower plants. Conversely, the water system needs energy for collecting, pumping, treating and desalinating water.

These issues make clear that the use and management of energy and water resources need to be addressed simultaneously, bearing in mind the fundamental difference between energy and water: that energy can be renewable, but water resources are finite. Is it possible to maximize opportunities in both systems, e.g. by using water to add flexibility to the power grid?

In this interactive deep dive, we want to map the understanding of the water-energy nexus and identify leverage points for improvement by drawing causal loop diagrams and system analysis.

Introduction by the moderator

Yves De Weerdt, VITO, Research Coordinator Sustainability Transitions

Systemic view on water

Deep dive on Water & Climate (from 15:30 to 16:50)

Grey to green infrastructure

Chairperson: Ger Bergkamp

Grey to green infrastructure: can nature teach us climate resilience?

In this session, the focus will be on what is needed and what is and will be available to make water and climate resilient management contribute to realizing the SDGs. In interaction with the audience, keynote speaker and panelist will review and discuss how identified market ready technological solutions can contribute to water security and climate resiliency.

The output of this deep-dive session will be a factsheet describing the various drivers, challenges and opportunities for up-scaling market ready technologies that contribute to specific climate resilient water management. The discussions at G-STIC 2019 will set-up further work, in 2020, towards a ‘living overview’ of selected market ready technologies specific to climate resilient water management that can deliver on the water-related SDGs by 2030. The ‘living overview’ will form a contribution to the development of Science, Technology and Innovation Roadmaps for the SDGs.

Innovations for achieving the SDGs with climate resilient water infrastructure

Mehdi Ahmadi will elaborate on how water and climate resilient management will shape the transition in water management and contribute to delivering the SDGs. The focus will be on what is needed and what is and will be available to make water and climate resilient management contribute to realizing the SDGs. This will entail innovations, technologies, new approaches and cover both grey and green infrastructure solutions.

Mehdi Ahmadi
Interactive panel discussion

Moderators: Durk Krol, Executive Director, WSSTP (Belgium) and Ger Bergkamp (ARCOWA)


- Dr Hartwig Kremer, Senior Programme Officer, Head of the Global Environment Monitoring Unit, UN Environment Programme (UNEP) (Water quality perspective on resilient infrastructure)

- Mrs Corinne Trommsdorf, Water Wise Cities, IWA – International Water Association (Urban perspective on climate resilient water infrastructure)

- Prof. Dr Luuk Dorren, Professor School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, Bern Applied University (Switzerland) (Infrastructure resilience and risk management)

- Polite Laboyrie, President Central Dredging Association / Witteveen+Bos, The Netherlands (Dredging and Working with Nature for resilient water infrastructure)

- Mr. Samir Jazouli, Marketing Manager for Wastewater and Reuse, Market Coordinator for Oil & Gas, Veolia, France (System change to create climate resilient water infrastructure)

- Ase Johannessen, Researcher Environmental Risk, Technical University Delft, The Netherlands (Societal and institutional collaboration and learning)

Durk Krol Ger Bergkamp Corinne Trommsdorff Hartwig Kremer Luuk Dorren Polite Laboyrie Ase Johannessen Samir Jazouli
Concluding remarks

Other sessions related to the Water theme

Deep dive on Water & ICT (from 17:00 to 18:20)

Digital water: can citizens contribute to put data into action?

Chairperson: Inge Genné

Inspired by the Smart Water session of previous G-STIC editions, focusing on technologies for data collection and monitoring solutions, we are going to dive into the societal aspects of smart solutions. Two inspiring cases will frame how human sensed data and citizen science can generate environmental knowledge (Ground Truth 2.0) and how citizens are called upon to take action themselves or to push policy makers to action. 

Since we are all members of the society, you will become part of the stage and join us in this deep dive on actionable data

Grip on Water
Smart stormwater buffering
Interactive debate

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