IWRA is excited to be collaborating with K-water (the Korea Water Resources Corporation) and water experts from around the world on the new Smart Water Management (SWM) Project.

What is Smart Water Management?

Smart Water Management (SWM) uses Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and real-time data and responses as an integral part of the solution for water management challenges. SWM is becoming an area of increasing interest as governments from around the world integrate smart principles into their urban, regional and national strategies. The potential application of smart systems in water management is wide and includes solutions for water quality, water quantity, efficient irrigation, leaks, pressure and flow, floods, droughts and much more.

By applying SWM infrastructure such as sensors, smart meters, monitors, GIS and satellite mapping, and other data sharing tools to water management, real-time solutions can be implemented and broader networks can work together to reduce current water management challenges.

The Smart Water Management Project

To support the continued growth of SWM, IWRA is partnering with K-water (the Korea Water Resources Corporation) to better understand and promote the benefits of SWM solutions through the SWM Project. The main output of this collaboration will be the Smart Water Management Case Studies Report, which aims to promote the continued implementation of SWM by sharing the knowledge and insights gained by exemplary SWM projects from around the world.

Objectives of the SWM Project

• Promote the use of SWM for current water challenges
• Showcase and provide insights from exemplary cases of SWM from around the world
• Support future SWM projects by highlighting the enablers and barriers for SWM to decision makers
• Identify the contribution SWM can offer in achieving the SDGs

Who is involved?

IWRA has received SWM case studies from over 25 countries from around the world as part of this project, and is currently finalising the selection of case studies for the Report. IWRA and K-water will work with the case studies leaders, and other experts interested in SWM to create the SWM Case Studies Report over the next year. While we are in the final stages of case study selection, IWRA is always interested in hearing about new SWM projects, and so encourage you to share your SWM stories with us at: office@iwra.org

SWM Task Force

The Association was glad to launch the debut of IWRA’s Smart Water Management Task Force in 2017. With an open call for panellists, IWRA sought experts from around the world to join its SWM Task Force, to make a meaningful contribution to SWM through the SWM Project with K-water. The SWM Task Force is made up of selected IWRA members, supported by its Executive Board and Secretariat. Panellists will have the opportunity to:

  1. Contribute to the new joint Smart Water Management Project, by reviewing and providing advice on exemplary SWM case studies currently being developed by water experts from 10 countries around the world.
  2. Provide their input on the analysis of the cases to enable IWRA to share insights to the broader water community on how SWM can assist with resolving current water challenges and supporting the Sustainable Development Goals both effectively and efficiently.
  3. Interact and create meaningful networks and relationships among IWRA members within their professional discipline, as well as to contribute to projects and initiatives that otherwise would be inaccessible for individual professionals in the field

As Smart Water Management is an immerging field, we were delighted to receive such interest in the project and the SWM Task Force from experts in a range of related water fields, with 22 applicants representing 12 countries from around the world, from both developing and more developed regions. These experts will bring their knowledge and skills in water resources management, technology, engineering, planning and policy to strengthen the Smart Water Management Project and share insights into this new and exciting field.

The following list includes the names of IWRA’s SWM Task Force Panellists: Henning Bjornlund, Sinafekesh Girma, Neil Grigg, Shaofeng Jia, Blanca Jiménez Cisneros, Paul Omondi Agwanda, Fernando Ortiz Westendarp, Mary Trudeau and Muhammad Wajid Ijaz. 

More information on the Panellists

  • Henning Bjornlund (Australia) – Research Professor of Water Policy and Management at the University of South Australia. Henning is also a board member of IWRA and the chair of its Science, Technology and Publication Committee. He is representing that committee on the Task Force. For the last four years he has focused his research on improving the productivity and profitability of small-scale irrigators in Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Tanzania by introducing Agricultural Innovation Platforms and simple to use tools to monitor soil moisture and nutrients. This work will continue for the next four years. His past research has focused on analysing water markets and their operations, impact and design in Australia and wider water sharing policies in Alberta, Canada.
  • Sinafekesh Girma (Ethiopia) – Civil Engineer, currently completing a graduate degree in Integrated Water Resource management at the University of Applied Sciences Cologne, Institute for Technology and Resources Management in the Tropics and Subtropics, Germany. She is a DAAD full scholarship holder in perusing her graduate studies. Sinafekesh has a Civil Engineering degree from Addis Ababa Institute of technology and has been working on Rainwater harvesting systems in dry areas of Kenya with Africa Water Bank and WASH project in a refugee camp with Norwegian Church Aid in Ethiopia. She is interested in SWM to broaden water management knowledge and contribute to the successful implementation of the project.
  • Neil Grigg (United States) – Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Colorado State University. His teaching and research focus on water resources, infrastructure and utilities, especially on management and governance issues. He studies smart water systems as applied by sensors and decision logic to water infrastructure systems. He has also been Assistant Secretary for Natural Resources and Director of the Division of Environmental Management for North Carolina, as well as director of the state water institute. His recent books include Integrated Water Resources Management (Macmillan); Infrastructure Finance: The Business of Infrastructure for a Sustainable Future; and the Water Business: From the Global Environment to Your Tap (Wiley).
  • Shaofeng Jia (China) – Deputy Director of the Centre for Water Resources Research, China & Professor at the Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Science. His research of water resources management includes assessment under changing environments, planning, economics, institutions and governance. He has consulted for the Ministry of China Government, the World Bank, the World Resources Institute, Conservation International, the Nature Conservancy and other domestic and international organisations. His other roles include Chair of the Department of Water Resources Research, Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Vice Chair of Special Committee for Water Resources, the Hydraulic Engineering Society of China, Board Member of China Society of Territory Economists, Editorial Board Member of Water International and Journal of Economics of Water Resources. He has authored more than 200 papers and 8 books.
  • Blanca Jiménez Cisneros – Director, Water Sciences and Secretary, International Hydrological Program-IHP, UNESCO. Blanca is an Environmental Engineer with a Master and PhD degree in water management. Her fields of expertise include climate change, urban water and environmental sciences. She has 35 years in academia (as a full professor of the National Autonomous University of Mexico, UNAM), government and international organisations. She currently has 192 research and innovation projects under her responsibility and has received several honours and awards including the Mexican National Science and Arts Prize in Technology and Design (2009), the Global Water Award granted by the International Water Association (IWA) (2010) and in 2017 was elected as the best environmental engineer in Mexico. She has over 487 publications in scientific journals, books and conferences has been an author of Mexican and international standards and patents on water.
  • Paul Omondi Agwanda (Kenya) – Former Manager for Asset Development and Management at the Lake Victoria South Water Services Board, Kenya for 10 years. He is a Civil Engineer with over 10 years’ experience in planning and development of water supply and sanitation infrastructure and technical assistance programs. Currently, he pursues Master in Water Resources Development and Management at Sungkyunkwan University, in South Korea. His focus and interest include Ubiquitous Urban Water Management, Smart Water Grid Planning and Integrated Water Resource Management for sustainable urban settlements. He brings on board to the Task Force practical experience in water supply environment in developing countries coupled with an academic research perspective.
  • Fernando Ortiz Westendarp (Mexico) – Project Manager Professional (PMP) and Civil Engineer with over 25 years of experience in water and wastewater projects in the USA, México and Central America. He holds a graduate degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Texas, Austin and is currently a Program Manager at the North American Development Bank. In his current capacity he has been involved in innovative initiatives such as Energy Efficiency, Results Measurement and Project Impact Assessment, Green Infrastructure, Process Mapping and Risk Assessment, among others. He has ample experience advising water utilities on technical, financial and management strategies and has recently been involved in an ambitious effort in Northern México developing a group collaboration strategy to improve water utilities management practices through capacity building in energy efficiency.
  • Mary Trudeau (Canada) – Director of Envirings Incorporated, a private sector consultancy providing policy and program advice on a range of water and climate adaptation issues to government and non-government organizations. She is an experienced urban water infrastructure manager and professional engineer in Ontario, Canada. She earned a PhD researching urban hydrology and associations with aquatic biodiversity decline. She is passionate about building capacity to meet the growing challenges for a sustainable future and sees smart water management as one of the ways to deploy human resources and ingenuity to this purpose.
  • Muhammad Wajid Ijaz (Pakistan) – Environmental Protection Agency, Pakistan since 2011. Currently, he is pursuing a Ph.D. in environmental engineering at U.S.-Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Water and has various technical publications at his credit. Muhammad holds an M.Sc. degree in Water Resources Engineering from Center of Excellence in Water Resources Engineering, Lahore with a background in agricultural engineering. Recently, he has developed a multi-sensor based framework for the integrated assessment of landscape evolution under regulated fluvial regimes and its turn effect over hydrogeomorphology and water quality of the Indus Delta system. He also takes part in outreach activities from the platform of Society of Water Managers, Youth Parliament of Pakistan, Radio Pakistan and special writings in the national newspapers.