WIF Team Challenge for Young Water Professionals - Launch

Date: 20th February 2019

Location: Arcadis Office, King's Cross, London, N1 9AB

Time: 3pm-7pm (Registration from 2.30pm)

This competition aims to bring together young professionals from different organisations across the sector to form multi-stakeholder teams to work on the challenge theme: 'The Circular Economy in the Water Sector'.

This event is by invitation only for our partners, members and selected organisations including:-

Water Companies, Regulators, Tier 1 Consultants & Contractors, NGOs and Supply Chain

Challenge Theme

The theme for this challenge will be "The Circular Economy in the Water Sector". Almost all future visions of sustainability endorse or incorporate the concept of the circular economy. As well as reducing the consumption of natural resources, it creates new economic opportunities and job opportunities. Water is a key factor in the circular economy and the water cycle itself is an important source of resource, comprising water, nutrients and feedstocks for biofuels or bioplastics.

Teams will be asked to identify and pitch an idea around this theme, which they expect will be common practice within the water sector by 2030.

Successful candidates will take part in a briefing session, where they will be given an outline of the challenge, including presentations from industry experts and examples of the topic.

Participants will be assigned to their team, comprising four cross-sector members.

There will follow a 2-hour working session where the teams can begin to develop their ideas and their approach to the challenge over the coming weeks. There will then be an opportunity to network and relax afterwards at an informal drinks reception.

Teams will work together to develop their idea and finalise their presentation to pitch at the final judging and awards, which will take place in London on 10th April 2019. It is expected that the challenge should not occupy more than 8-12 hours of candidates' time outside of the events.


Registration, networking and refreshments


Welcome from the event sponsor - Arcadis
Blair Mitchell - Arcadis

Blair Mitchell | Arcadis
Business Director - Water Sector

Account Leader and Business Director for Southern Water account, Blair’s role also includes leadership of the South East Engineering team that supports Thames Water, Thames Tideway and Southern Water. See full speaker biography here.
Introduction to the day and competition briefing

Peter Drake | CEO | Water Industry Forum

Introduction to the circular economy
Leo Nutter - Ellen MacArthur Foundation

Leo Nutter | Ellen MacArthur Foundation
Research Analyst

Leo joined the Ellen MacArthur Foundation shortly after graduating from the University of York in 2016, where he achieved a bachelor's degree in Environmental Science, earning a first-class honours with distinction. See full speaker biography here.
The circular economy in the water sector
Steve Kaye - UKWIR

Steve Kaye | UKWIR
Chief Executive

Steve is a chartered mechanical engineer and has worked in the water industry for around twenty nine years. Steve has an MBA from City University in London and is also a visiting professor at Imperial College and Brunel University. See full speaker biography here.
Team Allocation, Q&A

Peter Drake | CEO | Water Industry Forum

Team Working Session
Drinks Reception


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A fantastic start to the WIF Team Challenge at our launch event in London last week, with a warm welcome from Blair Mitchell, Business Director for the Water Sector at Arcadis.

Leo Nutter from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation began with an introduction to the circular economy and a great insight into the Foundation’s mission to accelerate the transition to a circular economy through working with business, government and academia.

Leo’s presentation can be viewed here.

Steve Kaye, Chief Executive of UKWIR, focused on the circular economy in the water sector, highlighting the needs and challenges of implementing changes within the industry. Steve gave  examples of UKWIR’s projects and shared some ideas for the teams to take inspiration from for their own projects.

Steve’s presentation can be viewed here.

Following our speakers’ presentations, the teams began to formulate their ideas during a 2-hour working session.

Our candidates then had the opportunity to relax and network, with refreshments provided by our hosts.

The competition objectives and rules can be found here

Thanks to all the team at Arcadis for their excellent hospitality and support for this event.

We are looking forward to seeing the teams’ presentations at the judging event on 10th April.