About the Convention

Now into its seventh edition, Singapore International Water Week (SIWW) 2016 reinforces the global sharing and co-creation of innovative water solutions. Aligned with this objective, Water Convention offers a platform for water experts to share their solutions and practical experience, and address the challenges that spans over five different themes.

  1. Delivering Water from Source to Tap
  2. Effective and Efficient Wastewater Management
  3. Water for Liveability and Resilience
  4. Water Quality and Health
  5. Water for Industries

Delivering Water from Source to Tap

Population growth, climate change, aging infrastructure, increased agriculture, and industry activities are continuously posing threats to the world’s water supply. With advances in technology and practice, some countries are now able to mitigate these challenges by diversifying their water sources or tapping water from alternative (non-conventional) sources.

A paradigm shift with regards to alternative water sources is occurring although there continues to be much debate about the opportunities and risks of alternative water sources. Issues are centred on risk assessment, reliability and cost-effectiveness of the related treatment and supply system, the contexts where they might be viable, and the regulatory framework in which the technologies can operate. There are also concerns that the strong reliance on infrastructures may create rigidities, which may be problematic to adapt to changes in the future. In general, many argue that the ideal water supply service in cities of the future should be adaptable, resilient, flexible and sustainable. At the same time, there must be public buy-in and confidence in the supplied water. In the realm of water distribution, good asset management remains an important fundamental aspect of an efficient network, but “smart water” is quickly gaining the interest of utilities as well.

The sessions of Theme 1 aim to profile best practices and case studies of technologies relating to the treatment and delivery of water, including those from alternative water sources, in an efficient, effective and sustainable manner.

The topics of Theme 1 include:

  • Innovation in water distribution
    • Asset management & optimisation
    • Network condition assessment & pipe rehabilitation
    • Latest technologies in leak detection of large diameter water mains
    • Sensors for water quality and hydraulic monitoring (including data management & analytics)
    • Smart metering systems (including data management & analytics)
    • Energy optimisation & recovery
  • Water efficiency and demand management
    • Water saving technologies
    • Water restrictions
    • Water conservation measures / programmes for household & industry
    • Public engagement & education
  • Innovation in water treatment
    • Desalination
    • Direct & indirect potable reuse
    • Disinfection
    • Advanced oxidation processes
    • Membrane-based technologies
    • Non-membrane-based technologies
    • Energy optimisation & recovery
    • Centralized & decentralized systems

Effective and Efficient Wastewater Management

With high energy costs and stricter regulations on greenhouse gas emissions and climate change policies, the pressure to reduce footprint and energy from wastewater and sludge treatment processes is fast becoming a critical research agenda.

This theme looks at sustainable wastewater treatment and network management strategies with a focus on low-energy processes, resource recovery and asset management. The wastewater treatment plant of the future will optimise the energy–waste–water nexus and achieve the aims of energy self-sufficiency, economic viability, and environmental sustainability. The vision is to maximise energy recovery and minimise energy consumption of the treatment process without compromising effluent quality. Additionally, with the increase in water recycling for both potable and non-potable use, it is important to monitor the wastewater discharged into sewers for toxicity or compounds which may affect downstream wastewater treatment processes.

Practice and research-oriented papers on the following sub-topics are welcome:

  • Innovation in wastewater treatment
    • Membrane-based processes
    • Non-membrane-based processes
    • Anaerobic biological processes
    • Micro-pollutants removal
    • Low-energy organics & nutrient removal
    • Nutrients / resource recovery & use
    • Sludge treatment &biosolids management
    • Management of greenhouse gas emissions
    • Instrumentation, control & automation
    • Wastewater treatment in urban setting
    • Constructed wetlands for wastewater treatment
    • Synergies between centralized & decentralized treatments
    • Life Cycle Analysis (LCA)
  • Innovation in wastewater network management
    • Drainage & sewer management
    • Asset management & optimisation
    • Sensors for wastewater monitoring
    • Stormwater flow & river basin management

Water for Liveability and Resilience

Cities around the world today need to deal with the pressing issues of climate change and population growth while creating a liveable and resilient environment for their people and for generations. Governments, utilities, industries, and urban planners are working towards implementing strategies and programmes to manage water and achieve an efficient, adequate and sustainable water supply. As such, it is crucial to develop a systematic approach in defining liveability and resilience, and the integrated role played by water in achieving the vision of water-sensitive cities. There is also a need to relook the demand management aspect and localised alternative water sources, decentralised systems, and fit-for-purpose water production.

This theme looks into case studies and research activities that employ effective engagement, planning and management strategies, as well as the implementation of technologies and water systems to address the challenges. Papers which reflect the extent of how implementation of the case study or research activity is being impacted (positively or negatively) by the prevailing institutional, regulatory, pricing and governance arrangements are encouraged.

  • Strategies for embedding water systems thinking early in urban planning
  • Sustainable development goals in cities
  • Reframing demand side management
  • Stormwater management for climate change adaptation
    • Water-sensitive urban design
    • Flood resilience
    • Stormwater as a resource
  • The urban metabolism (water-energy-waste nexus)
  • Water analytics and modelling

Water Quality and Health

Strategies to manage the quality and safety of water, whether it is for drinking, domestic, recreational, agricultural or industrial purposes, are imperative to protect global public health, promote socioeconomic development, and maintain essential ecosystem services. Considerable effort has gone into improving access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation to reduce the prevalence of waterborne and water-related diseases. Yet, substantial challenges remain in many parts of the world. In addition, global driving forces such as population growth, climate change and its related extreme weather events, increasing water scarcity, rapid urbanisation, and industrialisation further threaten the quality of water resources and the sustainability of safe water supply.

This theme aims to address the major knowledge gaps, innovative developments, and emerging issues in water quality and health. Prevention, resilience, cost-effectiveness, and sustainability cut across this theme. Water quality management is increasingly placed in the context of the full water cycle, including wastewater management, water recycling and re-use, and the green, circular economy. Papers which focus on the following topics, presenting research results, case studies, practical applications or solutions, and management practices are encouraged.

  • Protecting source water quality
    • Modelling & prediction
    • Protection of surface / ground water quality
    • Disasters & extreme events
  • Risk assessment and management practices
    • Operations, monitoring & evaluation of water safety plans
    • Going full circle: water safety plans & sanitation safety plans
    • Sanitation safety plans – methods, procedures, current and future directions
    • Water security
    • QMRA, decision analysis & surveillance
    • Chemical risk assessment
    • Realistic interpretation of health risks from emerging contaminants
  • Innovation in water quality monitoring
    • Contaminants of emerging concern
    • Automation / robotics in water quality analysis
    • Real-time sensors & remote-sensing data
    • Advanced detection methods / technologies
    • Rapid microbial water quality test methods
    • Biological assays
  • Public policy and engagement for water quality issues
    • Outreach, education, communication, & social media
    • Policy & regulatory frameworks for water quality

Water for Industries

With the rapid development of urbanisation and industrialisation, water scarcity is a pressing challenge globally. The sustainability of our water resources in the near future is at risk. The global industrial sector has been identified as the second largest water user after the agriculture sector, and hence, reducing industrial water consumption is an effective means of addressing the global water crisis.

Water sustainability can be achieved in the industry by implementing comprehensive water efficiency management, being open to innovative technical solutions and strategies that can increase the efficiency of water usage, and adopting effective wastewater treatment and recycling technologies. The challenges in both availability of water source, which calls for greater water reuse, and quality of water discharge, which necessitates more stringent water treatment strategies, have been recognised. However, the interdependency of water and energy still requires attention, and strategies for recovering energy from processes will be of high importance.

This theme calls for papers on water-intensive industries such as thermoelectric power generation, oil and gas, food and beverage and mining under the following topics:

  • Water source and demand management in industries
    • Availability of “fit for purpose” water
    • Combining different supply sources to address water demand
    • Regulatory impact on advances in water analytics & supervision
    • Water conservation strategies in industries
  • Innovative industrial processes, water & wastewater treatment, and recycling technologies
    • Thermoelectric power generation
    • Oil & gas industry (on-shore and off-shore)
    • Food & beverage industry
    • Mining industry
  • Energy efficiency around industrial water intake, process water and discharge
    • Energy reduction through process optimisation
    • Energy regeneration, recovery or alternative energy use