During this week, Porto is the European Capital of water and innovation. The Alfândega Congress Center will be the main stage for Porto Water Innovation Week, an event that will bring together more than 1,700 participants and exhibitors from around 60 countries, including policy makers, government officials, representatives from industry and agriculture, technology, startups, SMEs, investors and young professionals.
A number of events will take place during the week, with a focus on the facilitation of access to funding and markets for innovation, the acquisition of innovation by end-users, development of innovation-friendly regulation, dissemination of available financing mechanisms, sharing best practices and facilitating access to results through open collaborative platforms and building European partnerships.
Porto Water Innovation Week has three main international events:
- EIP Water Conference 2017 (27 – 28 September);
- Mayors & Water Conference 2017 (29 September);
- Water Innovation Lab Europe Porto 2017 (24 – 29 September).
The EIP Water Conference is an initiative from the European Water Innovation Partnership (EIP Water) which features a rich and stimulating program of expert panels and debates, involving 70 reference international guests. The discussion will be mainly focused on finding ways to overcome barriers to innovation in the water sector, as well as ways to promote business opportunities, partnerships and access to new technologies.
Mayors & Water Conference 2017 is promoting a platform for European cities to collaborate on water issues, in order to facilitate integrated and sustainable management, therefore contributing to the achievement of the environmental objectives established within the European Union.
The Water Innovation Lab Europe Porto 2017 aims to provide a unique and unforgettable learning experience to 50 young leaders, mentors and facilitators from all across the world. By facing local realities and working to solve real problems, each participant develops leadership, creativity, communication and employability skills.
Another highligh in this week is the SPLASH Startup Competition, aimed at startups with innovative solutions in the water sector. 3 winners will be chosen from 16 finalists by a jury. But the public can also “vote” through a dedicated app. The winners will receive financial prizes, offered by the Municipality of Porto:€12,000, €6,000 and €3,000. There’s another €1,000 prize to the project presenting more potential on the energy field, offered by InnoEnergy.
116 companies, startups, universities and national and international research centers will be exhibiting during the week, spreading new technologies, equipment and solutions in the water market.
Porto Innovation Hub (PIH) will also be part of this exhibition. PIH showcases the potential of innovation, presenting the direct impact in the improvement of the citizens’quality of life, in creation of qualified jobs, and the contribution to take the city to new development stages. The exhibiton will present the most innovative technologies developed in Porto, related to reserach and exploration of the Ocean.
Once again, Porto is as a platform for innovation in this joint organization of the Municipality, Águas de Portugal Group, the National Civil Engineering Laboratory and the Portuguese Water Partnership, with institutional support of the European Commission and the Portuguese Government.