The Institute of Water Annual Conference and Exhibition

21 May 2012

Innovating to meet customer needs will shape the future of our industry

The Institute of Water Annual Conference and Exhibition, held on 17th and 18th May in London, has once again proved to be the key event in the calendars of the water and utility sectors, with many top opinion formers, industry leaders and newcomers debating industry trends and their implications as well as presenting some of the latest industry research.

The theme for this year’s event was Changing the Industry for a Sustainable Legacy with the focus firmly on innovation and its role in developing the sector to ensure customer service, evolving legislation and technical delivery all help to shape the industry for a sustainable future.

Capturing some of the key thinking:

Martin Baggs, CEO of Thames Water said: “Innovation is not just about driving down costs. For our customers, its also about value and improving service. It’s no longer about technology and legislation, it is also about regulation and customers. All these aspects need to work hand in hand to drive innovation.”

Heidi Mottram, CEO of Northumbrian Water said: “I believe we need a greater focus on efficiency and sustainability. I challenge the sector to work collaboratively and innovatively to deliver the best possible service to customers who are at the heart of the industry.

“We welcome the publication of The White Paper which supports innovation and solutions to mitigate climate change and help customers to minimise their impacts.

“But the role of water companies goes beyond the supply and removal of waste water.

“Our industry also contributes to a vibrant economy and I call on Government to think about moving people and industry to water as much as moving water to them.”

Professor Martin Cave commented: “I believe this industry is on a threshold that will lead to innovation and change and in my view the sooner that comes the better.”

Sonia Phippard, Director for Water, Floods, Environmental Risk and Regulation, Defra said: “Innovation is not just about cutting edge technology. We are helping to co-ordinate co-operation across the sector and this is key to ensuring the right environment for innovation to take place.”

Delegate Matt Glass, Assistant Bid Manager, Veolia Water said: “It’s been a really interesting and thought provoking two days and I have a lot to take back and share with my team.”

Summing up the two days, Nick Ellins, President of The Institute of Water said: “As President of The Institute of Water, the last two days have invigorated and inspired me and I hope others. All of our speakers have expressed challenging and informative views on innovation and sustainability in our sector. I hope all our delegates have been stimulated to take away the ideas that have been shared and that this event contributes in some way to the future development of our industry.”

For more press information please contact:
Lyndsey Gilmartin
, Institute of Water: 0191 422 0088 or e-mail

Richard Truman or Will Herman at Pelican PR: 01457 820 807 or e-mail

The Institute of Water was founded in 1945 and is the only professional body that exclusively supports the careers of anyone working in the UK water industry.

The institute supports the careers of people working in all professions and at all levels across the UK water industry by offering a unique and independent learning, development and networking framework.

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