In 2050, it is estimated that 9 billion people will live in large urban areas. Clean water for people, industry and food will become a challenge. We need to form partnerships and connect solutions and challenges.

A variety of Dutch water sector companies, knowledge institutes and water technology related organisations, together with their international partners, will bring you a high-level and in-depth programme at the Netherlands Pavilion during EXPO 2020 Dubai.

Global challenges, integrated local solutions

Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP), together with Water Alliance, is hosting the seminar Water, Energy & Food for Cities, Industry and Agriculture on 23 March at the Netherlands Pavilion during EXPO 2020 Dubai.

It is part of a Dutch trade mission to Dubai. The Dutch water sector invites you to join and attend the seminar in person or via live stream. Official partners to the event are PUB Singapore and the Government of the Netherlands. 

Seminar programme

All times are local UAE time (GST); 3 hours ahead of CET.

09:30-10:00 | Registration / Walk in – coffee and tea

10:00-10:35 | High-level opening

Word of welcome and addressing of the main themes by Nicole Hellwig, Manager Marketing, Communications and Events at Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP).

Key notes:

  • Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management, Mark Harbers
  • Video message from Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, Singapore
  • Ingrid Thijssen, Chairman VNO – NCW: Business in the region 
  • Video message from Meiny Prins , CEO Priva: Water – Energy – Food Nexus – Sustainable Urban Delta
  • Yousef Yousef, Chairman of Green Scale-ups Org: Double green, Scaling green business to create lasting impact

10:35-10:50 | Coffee break

10:50-12:10 | Session 1: Integrated Water Resource Management in Water-scarce Areas

Reflections on Integrated Water Resource Management and the Way Forward Towards the Water-Energy-Food Nexus.

Two to three decades after introducing Integrated Water Resource Management in the Arab region - we reflect on what has been achieved so far and discuss an outlook towards a water-secure future. We demonstrate and discuss the importance of an integral water resource management in water-scarce areas like the Middle East.

By considering water resources in an integral way, optimised and sustainable solutions can be developed and implemented. We will discuss the question on how IWRM could be taken to the next level as a sustainable and inclusive approach to water security.

  • Introduction - Robin Morelissen, Deltares
  • IWRM approaches and technologies - Judith ter Maat, Deltares
  • Towards Sustainable Water Management System in GCC Countries - Prof. Waleed Khalil Al-Zubari, Arabian Gulf University
  • Governance aspects and experiences in IWRM, including financial aspects - Dr Ilyas Masih, IHE Delft
  • The Singapore Water Story - Michael Toh, PUB Singapore's National Water Agency
  • Panel discussion with the speakers on which next actions we could jointly take to progress this

12:10-13:15 | Session 2: Nexus: Water and Food Connections

Through this collaboration we would like to contribute to a long-term relationship to jointly develop solutions to water and food nexus challenges. Experts from the Netherlands, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai will contribute. The challenges we jointly address are global issues that are also paramount in the region: re-use and recycle water, water allocation (of fresh and saline water), water use efficiency, rainwater harvesting, navigating trade-offs and synergies, digital solutions and Artificial Intelligence (AI). We believe a holistic systems approach goes hand in hand with innovation and technical solutions. Partnership with multiple stakeholders including public, private and research partners is required for successful research, innovation and implementation. In this session we inspire partners to join forces by sharing best practices in research, innovation, scaling up and decision making.

  • Welcome - Ivo Demmers, WUR
  • Choices and consequences based on SIM4NEXUS serious game. Experience in Europe - Vincent Linderhof, WUR
  • Key Note - Water Nexus and AquaConnect: Delivering Alternative Water Use approaches for Greening the Desert - Prof. Dr. ir Huub H. M Rijnaarts, WUR
  • Making the connection - Hein Molenkamp, Water Alliance talk show host panel:
  1. Smart water technologies in production, provision, reuse and water management - Rasoul D. Mikkelson, Royal Eijkelkamp: Smart water and smart farming
  2. Partnerships for connections between drinking water and food sector - Giovanni Angiolini - Priva - Sustainable Deltas
  3. Digital and data technologies - Prof. Dr. Huub Rijnaarts, WUR

13:15-14:15 | Lunch and networking, Tour of the Netherlands Pavilion and VR Experience NL in Business

14:15-15:55 | Session 3: Smart Water Management - a vision on sustainable water supply

Climate change puts enormous pressure on our water resources. The growing population and demands for water require resilient and robust water supplies. Making smart water supply management essential around the world. In both freshwater supply systems and desalination water treatment. Water managers must act with the source-to-tap-approach in mind. Utilizing different treatment and monitoring technologies in the raw water source and treatment plant. To do this efficient water quality data is a must. Self-learning prediction models allow us to deal with the ever-changing demands for water. In quantity and quality.

In this session, different water challenges and their solutions from the Middle East region are shared.

  • Introduction: Harro Brons, Water Alliance
  • Holistic approach to water resource management - Yousef Yousef, LG Sonic
  • Introduction - Jos-Willem Verhoef, Optiqua
  • Singapore’s Experience in Digital Water - Michael Toh, PUB Singapore’s National Water Agency
  • Panel discussion with: Yousef Yousef, LG Sonic; Jos-Willem Verhoef, Optiqua; Michael Toh,  PUB Singapore’s National Water Agency; Daniël Dusseljee, Witteveen+Bos, and Dubai Municipality (tbc)

15:15-15:45 | Tea break, networking, Tour of the Netherlands Pavilion

15:45-16:45 | Session 4: Water Safety and Efficiency in the Build Environment

A vision to modern water management, by Holland Water and Hydraloop as well as other contributors. How can building owners use smart data and water technology to win the battle for safe water and at the same time build on a structural basis for sustainability and economic efficiency?

  • Introduction - Harro Brons, Water Alliance
  • Water safety & efficiency in the build environment - Rogier van den Brink, Holland Water
  • Act wise, use water twice - Alexander Euler, Hydraloop
  • Panel discussion with representatives from the region, including: Holland Water, Rogier van den Brink; Hydraloop, Alexander Euler; Culligan, Marco Seghi; Lu’ay Khdeir, Atkins, a member of the SNC-Lavalin Group, and Mariam Al-Qubaisi, Etihad Aviation

17:10-17:20 | Closing

Q&A session with the Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management, Mr Mark Harbers, and partners of the Netherlands Pavilion.

Discussion leader: Hein Molenkamp, Director Water Alliance.

  • Koen Sweers, Van Oord
  • Peter van der Linde, Holland Water
  • Giovanni Angiolini, Priva

17:20-17:45 | Wavemakers United - Tilly Stroo

17:45-17:47 | Closing words by Nicole Hellwig, Netherlands Water Partnership

17:40-19:00 | Drinks  

Opportunity to visit the exposition ‘The Dyke, social impact stories of a Dutch icon’, a multimedia project made by photographer Cynthia Boll and journalist Stephanie Bakker in cooperation with Van Oord. The project focusses on the social impact of maritime projects. Themes such as climate change, ecology, water safety and economic importance are addressed trough personal stories and reports.

Register to join this event

Join the Dutch water sector and its worldwide partners for this seminar on global challenges and integrated local solutions.

You can either join online or in person.

If you would like to join us online, please register via

If you would like to join us in person, please:

  1. Register your attendance via the form on the NWP website.
  2. Get a ticket to World Expo Dubai from the official website. Please make sure you have read the COVID-19 regulations.
  3. Show your confirmation email upon arrival.

Since there is limited seating in the Business Lounge at the Netherlands Pavilion, we will confirm your attendance in advance.