Competition launched to find the next ground breaking innovation for the water industry
This year sees the launch of a major new business innovation competition for the water industry.
The Water Innovation Network – a partnership between Anglian Water and Opportunity Peterborough – is launching The Big Water Challenge 2016.
The two month long challenge will see companies working out ground-breaking solutions to one of the industry’s thorniest problems. The theme for the inaugural challenge is ‘Keep the Water Flowing’ and will focus on ways Anglian Water can maintain supplies to customers’ homes and restore water after a burst pipe as quickly as possible.
To give participating companies a background to the issue they will be invited to an event in Peterborough on May 6th where they will get to quiz experts, explore the difficulties of dealing with supply interruptions and get to grips with the challenge. They will then have six weeks to refine and submit their ideas. These ideas will be whittled down to a final shortlist of firms who will get the chance to pitch to a panel of senior Anglian Water staff. The winning idea will get financial and technical support from the company to make their idea a reality.
Experts attending the event will include members of staff from Anglian Water teams dealing with restoration of water supply and supply interruptions. They will be joined by representatives from the Integrated Maintenance and Repair Alliance companies, which includes Clancy Docwra, Claret Civil Engineering and Kier MG. Anglian Water and its alliance companies are committed to working collaboratively to tackle significant challenges over the coming years and ensure water networks in the region run optimally.
David Ward, Anglian Water’s Head of Networks, said: “When a pipe bursts and our customers are off water we want to get them back on as soon as possible.
“We’ve made some really good advances in this area but we need to do much more. We want to explore the way our people, our network and our IT systems work to see how innovation can help make us faster and more efficient – and we’re asking for help.
“We’ve worked in the past with some really forward thinking, innovative companies on technology which has made a big difference to our business. So setting them a challenge like this is a great way to inspire and encourage innovation in the water industry whilst finding a solution to a current challenge. It could be an engineering solution, it could be a piece of software or it could be something else entirely – and it doesn’t matter how big or small it is.
“We want to guide companies through the process and support them to hone their ideas. We’re really excited to see what they come up with.”
Companies wishing to take part in the challenge can take advantage of an early bird rate now, which runs until 29th February. Information about interruption and restoration to supply will be emailed from the 1st March to those signed up with all the info needed to start developing their idea. They will also gain entry to the event at the Kingsgate Centre in Peterborough on May 6th where they can find out everything they will need to know to develop the idea into a business pitch.
To register your place please visit www.waterinnovation.net