Why attend the Utility Leaders Forum?

Utilities have the critical and ultimate responsibility to provide the infrastructure, systems, and governance to effectively manage water for the public. With growing populations, ageing infrastructure, and changing climate, challenges over the past decade have increased significantly. Many utilities across the world have become very creative and innovative to implement novel and game-changing solutions to these challenges. Their invaluable insights and knowledge are seldom shared on a global platform, and utilities rarely come together to discuss how to go forward towards solutions. To that end, the Utility Leaders Forum (ULF) will be a central feature during the IWA World Water Congress & Exhibition.

Joining the utilities programme in Copenhagen will create an extraordinary platform for discussion of the global and local challenges utilities experience in a changing environment and society. You can network with colleagues at your specific level in the organisation (CEO, operations, financial management, engineering, etc) and create valuable relationships for future cooperation. Outcomes of discussions will be taken forward and brought into relevant IWA forums and activities and to the IWA World Water Congress & Exhibition in Toronto in 2024.

At the end of day one, utility leaders will be invited to attend a networking reception at the facility of HOFOR-The Utility of Greater Copenhagen, hosted by 3VAND utilities. On day two, a boat trip exclusively for utility leaders will take attendees from the forum on a tour on the canals of Copenhagen, demonstrating climate solutions and extending networking opportunities from two days of discussions.

Programme Topics

Based on a strong consensus from the water utility sector, the sessions will focus on four areas:
Water Utilities as Community Leaders – Creating Integrated Water Management for Cities of the Future: Utilities must sustainably manage the integrated water cycle to ensure a reliable, high quality water supply and a resilient climate and crisis response capability. Additionally, the role of leading water utilities has evolved to becoming a ‘leader in the community’, investing locally as a job creator, and seeking public engagement into major infrastructure investments. How successful is this integrated approach? And how is it being done?
Accelerating Adoption of Innovation: Utilities face many challenges, with increasing demands in terms of population, climate goals, and water scarcity. With these challenges, utilities have found powerful ways to adopt innovation and technology. How can adoption of critical and needed solutions be accelerated?
Evolving with Climate Change: Mitigating against water scarcity, adapting to extreme weather events or more effectively utilising digitalisation and data, we focus on how utilities are adapting to the inevitable by building resilience in line with societal expectations.
The Digital Utility: There are numerous ways in which data can be used to improve and optimise all aspects of a utility’s operations. The Digital Utility unlocks an exciting new world of providing better outcomes for customers: better ways to communicate and engage, opportunities to reduce costs and risks, detection of operational issues before they occur, the list goes on. So many decisions, so much innovation – when and how should you dive in?

For questions concerning registration, please email: william.cappuyns@iwahq.org

For questions concerning content, email Helle Katrine Andersen: hka@danva.dk

Organised by:

Get involved

*An IWA World Water Congress & Exhibition 2022 registration is compulsory for Forum attendees.

Helle Katrine Andersen

COO DANVA (Danish Water and Waste Water Association)

Utility Leaders Forum is targeted to CEOs and leaders of utilities. The forum will be open to a number of stakeholders.

Location Guide

– Utility Leaders Forum will take place in Bella Center Congress Hall A1 (Room 1).
– Utility Leaders Reception will take place at Utility of Greater Copenhagen (across the road from venue) Address: Ørestads Boulevard 35
– Boat trip will take place on the canals of Copenhagen, pick up by bus at the Bella Center main entrance.




10:30 - 10:45

Opening of Utility Leaders Forum

10:30 - 12:00

SESSION 4 – Living in the Digital World

· Tom Mollenkopf, IWA President

· Carl-Emil Larsen, CEO DANVA (Danish Water and Wastewater   Association)

Setting the stage: Shane Morgan COO Urban Utilities, Brisbane, Australia

Igniting talks:

·       Jason Tucker, Director of Strategic Delivery and Commercial Assurance, Anglian Water, UK
Water resource management through a smart water network

·       Maree Lang, Managing Director, Greater Western Water, Australia
Creating a thriving digital utility

·       Christian Schou, Chief of projects, Aarhus Water, Denmark
Digitalization in Aarhus Vand – a Story of Partnerships

·       Riksta Zwart, CEO, Waterbedrijf Groningen, NL
Realizing a Water transition strategy: the benefit of artificial and client knowledge

Roundtables and panel discussion facilitated by Adam Lovell, CEO Water Services Association of Australia

10:45 - 12:00

SESSION 1 - Water Utilities as Community Leaders - Creating Integrated Water Management for Cities of the Future

13:30 - 14:45

SESSION 5 – Celebrating 2022 Climate Smart Utilities - Successes from Around the Globe and Recognition Event

Setting the stage: Prof. Hamanth Kasan, IWA Vice President

Igniting talks:

·       Diane Taniguchi-Dennis, CEO, or Marc Jockers, Chief of Staff, Clean Water Services, Hillsboro, Oregon, USA 

Utilities as leaders, partners and "anchor institutions" in their communities

·       Dr. Eng. Silver Mugisha, Managing Director National Water & Sewerage Corporation, Uganda
Utilities as community leaders in the developing world

·       William Fernandes, Director, Toronto Water, Canada
Innovative Workforce Development at an Integrated Water Management Utility

·       Dr. Nerena Di Lorenzo, Managing Director Melbourne Water, Australia
The Changing Societal Role of Water Utilities

Panel discussion with audience facilitated by Ed McCormick, IWA SC Utility Engagement Group chair

Opening of recognition event: Kala Vairavamoorthy, Executive Director IWA

Climate-Smart Stories 

·       Cedric Feliers, Veolia Eau d'Ile de France, France

·       Pascual Fernández, Canal De Isabel II, Spain

·       Brian Hansen, HOFOR AS, Denmark

Poster pitches of Climate-Smart stories - Facilitated by Corinne Tromsdorff, Water Cities and Carlos Diaz, IWA

13:30 - 15:00

SESSION 2 - Accelerating Adoption of Innovation

14:45 - 15:00

Closing of forum and messages for next Utility Leaders Forums 

Setting the stage: Jonathan Clement, IWA LET chair

Igniting talks:

·       Claus Homann, CSO/COO, Aarhus Water, Denmark
Partnerships facilitating innovation

·       Chris Rockey, Director Southwest Water, UK
Growing innovation from within the organisation

·       Bernard Koh, Assistant CE, PUB Singapore
The role of government in accelerating innovation

·       Dr. Asma El Kasmi, Director Cooperation and Communication, ONEE, Morocco
How partnerships can jump-start utility innovation

·       Rik Thijssen, Director Business Development & Innovation, Vitens, NL
Accelerating innovation through organizational changes. 

Panel discussion with audience facilitated by Jonathan Clement & Helle Katrine Andersen, COO DANVA

Towards Singapore Water Week 2024 and IWA WWCE Toronto 2024

·       Dr Pang Chee Meng, Chief Engineering and Technology Officer, PUB, Singapore

·       Robert Haller, CEO Canadian Water and Wastewater Association, Canada

Closing by Tom Mollenkopf, IWA President and Helle Katrine Andersen, COO DANVA

15:45 - 17:15

SESSION 3 - Evolving with Climate Change

15:30 - 18:30

Boat trip of the canals of Copenhagen and utility leaders networking - Demonstration of climate solutions

Setting the stage: Simon Parsons, Director, Scottish Water, UK:

Victorians, Airplanes and Rowing Boats – Planning for the long term

Igniting talks:

·       Pat McCafferty, MD Yarra Valley Water, Australia
Customer expectations in Australia

·       Dan Naidoo, Regional Manager of Umgeni Waterboard, Kwazulu Natal, South Africa and chairman of WISA Water Institute of Southern Africa, South Africa
Managing droughts and floods

·       Brian Hansen, Acting Vice President, Utility of Greater Copenhagen, Denmark
Holistic climate change adaptation in the Greater Copenhagen area

·       Matt Collings, Assistant GM, Moulton Niguel Water District, California, USA
Using data to create a sustainable water future

·       Gari Villa-Landa Sokolova, Head of International Affairs, AEAS, Spain
Drought, water scarcity and changing precipitation patterns

Welcoming remarks, roundtables and panel discussion facilitated by Shaunna Berendsen, Head of Innovation Engagement, Anglian Water & Miriam Feilberg, Head of Climate, DANVA

Pick up by bus at the Bella Center

Sightseeing on the canals of Copenhagen and viewing of Climate Solutions.

Drop off at the Harbour Bath for social event and swim

Walking distance to Cultural Night Tivoli or possibility for return to Bella Center

Planned and facilitated by Brian Hansen, Acting Vice President, Utility of Greater Copenhagen

18:00 - 20:00

SOCIAL EVENING EVENT - Utility Leaders reception

hosted by 3VAND utilities at Utility of Greater Copenhagen

Organising Committee

Helle Katrine Andersen – COO DANVA (Danish Water and Wastewater Association), Chair
Jonathan Clement – IWA LET Chair, Co-Chair
Tom Mollenkopf – IWA President
Adam Lovell –  Executive Director, Water Services Association of Australia
Shaunna Berendsen – Head of Innovation Engagement, Anglian Water
Ed McCormick – Chair of IWA Strategic Council Utility Engagement Workgroup
Brian Hansen, Acting Vice President, Greater Copenhagen Utility HOFOR
Miriam Feilberg, Head of Climate, DANVA (Danish Water and Wastewater Association)
Carlos Diaz – IWA Secretariat
William Cappuyns – IWA Secretariat