Water Forum

Monday 16th January

14.00 | Opening presentation

HE Eng.Yousif Al Ali

Assistant Undersecretary,

Ministry of Energy & Infrastructure, UAE

14.10 | Presentation: Water decarbonisation

Bruce Smith

Executive Director, Strategy and Planning

Emirates Water & Electricity Company

14.25 | Panel: Evaluating the water sector's path to net zero

  • How does the water industry decarbonise its water provision?
  • Desalination is key to water provision in the Middle East. How do governments and industry promote other methods, such as recycling, reuse, treatment and stormwater harvesting? 
  • Can improved demand side management shift water use and if yes, is its role high enough on the water agenda?
  • How will investment in low carbon water be funded?

Confirmed Speakers:

Jonathan Churchman-Davies

Industrial Water and Energy Efficiency Lead

Abu Dhabi Distribution Company

Latifa Lahsine

Senior Vice President, Engineering


Eng. Faisal Ali Rashid

Senior Director, Demand Side Management

Supreme Council of Energy, Dubai

Mohammad Abdelqader El Ramahi

Director Asset Management & Technical

Services, Masdar

Amer A. Alrajiba

VP of Capacity Planning & Analysis,

Saudi Water Partnership Company

Khadija Hasan Bin Braik

Technical Regulation Director

Abu Dhabi Department of Energy

15.10 | Panel: Ensuring socio-economic strength through water resilience

  • How does ensuring extensive potable water availability also bring economic benefits to a country?
  • Can nations promote greater gender equality through improved water resilience?
  • What role should governments, NGOs and the private sector play in promoting socio-economic advantages through strong water resilience?

Confirmed Speakers:

Moderator: Ghalia Albarazi

Senior Advisor,


Joe Battikh

Head of Energy & Water Knowledge Hub,

International Committee of the Red Cross

Prof Syed Javaid Zaidi

UNESCO Chair in Desalination &

Water Treatment, Qatar University

Thierry Froment


Veolia Water Technologies Middle East

Walid Khoury

General Manager


15.45 | Panel: UAE water security – and opportunities for a GCC network

  • Water security across the UAE is imperative. What needs to be in place for country-wide water security? And should there be a connected water network/market in GCC to promote even greater water security?
  • Is work required to better connect both intra- and inter-country water networks?
  • Would a connected network reduce water risks for GCC countries? 

Confirmed Speakers:

Dr Corrado Sommariva

CEO & Founder


Dr Mohamed Hamyd Dawoud

Advisor - Water Resources, Environment

Quality, Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi

Eng Aaesha Saeed Alshehhi

Director Water Production,

Etihad Water and Electricity

Dr Shehab Al Ameri

Water Asset Division Manager,


16.30 | Close of day 1

Tuesday 17th January

MC: Imteyaz Ahmad

Managing Director

Future Water and Power Consulting

10.30 | Panel: Low-carbon desalination and its role in a net zero strategy

  • What should be considered when making investment decisions that match desalination with net zero strategies?
  • What technology advancements in desalination will bring down the carbon cost of producing potable water?
  • Reverse osmosis has contributed significantly to decarbonising desalination - but what additional or alternative steps can be taken to decarbonise desalination further?

Confirmed Speakers:

Moderator: Imteyaz Ahmad

Managing Director,

Future Water and Power Consulting

Sameer Al Khateeb

Lead, Sustainable Water Desalination,


William Janssen



Mark Hedges

Executive Director, Asset Management,

Emirates Water and Electricity Company

Fatima Al Shaygi

Vice President,

IWPPs Asset Management, TAQA

11.15 | Presentation: Desalination - recovering minerals

  • Recovering minerals can have both environmental and economic benefits - how can these opportunities be promoted and exploited successfully?
  • This talk will look at the latest research and reasons that are driving a future industry of recovering minerals from brine.
  • Once recovered, what economic benefits do these minerals offer, and how will they be used by different industries?

Presented by:

Prof. Syed Javaid Zaidi

UNESCO Chair in Desalination and

Water Treatment, Qatar University

11.30 | Presentation: Decentralisation of desalination

  • Much of the focus regionally has been on large scale desalination plants. But could small-sized, highly localised desalination plants offer an opportunity for water security for communities?
  • Can decentralised desalination be an important part of a decarbonisation strategy?
  • Decentralised desalination reduces water transport requirements, but what about the network? Can it also be connected to the wider water network?
  • What happens to byproducts?

Presented by:

11.45 | Panel: Investing in low carbon water systems

  • Reducing water stress and increasing food security will require investment in the GCC water systems. Governments are investing in their individual water networks - where does the private sector fit it?
  • What types of finance are available and in terms of infrastructure, where is it most required as governments look to both desalination and different forms of water reuse?

Confirmed Speakers:

Moderator: Nada Abubakr

Managing Director

Isle Utilities

Robert Bryniak


Golden Sands Management

Ali T. Jaffery

Executive Director, Project and Export

Finance, AME, Standard Chartered Bank

Kenichiro Kitamura

Chief Representative for the Middle East

Japan Bank for International Cooperation

Rami Ghandour

Managing Director


12.30 | Break

14.00 | Panel: How digitalisation of asset management can improve efficiency

  • This panel will look at technologies that can be used for better asset management, in terms of running, down time and maintenance
  • How will digitalisation improve efficiencies and contribute to decarbonised water systems
  • What examples are there of technology use to improve asset management 

Confirmed Speakers:

Moderator: Lu’ay Khdeir

Regional Water Market Director,

Middle East, Atkins

Dr Bruce Stedall

Asset Management Director,


Nada Abubakr

Managing Director,

Isle Utilities

Julio de la Rosa

Business Development Director for Water

Solutions ME, Acciona Agua

Arif Anwar

Associate Professor,

University of Birmingham

14.45 | Digitalisation in the water industry

14.45 | Case Study 1: Digital Twin

Michael Baker

Water Asset Strategy and Performance

Department Manager, Transco

15.00 | Case Study 2: IoT, Cloud Computing, Open Source applications in Water Resources

Arif Anwar

Associate Professor,

University of Birmingham

15.15 | Case Study 3: AI in water and wastewater

Jatin Mehndiratta

Head of Business Development & Partnerships,

Pani Energy

15.30 | Presentation: Hydro Storage

Presented by:

Marc Buisson

Project Manager,


15.45 | Presentation: Eco-design water & resources recovery facility

  • A wastewater treatment plant that recovers biosolids, nitrogen, bio-gas and syngas, in addition to treated water. 
  • It is designed on the principles of circular economy and to be a “carbon negative” system. Neither a pilot nor concept, it is being built now in France.

Presented by:

Eric Judenne

Director, Sustainable Development,

Suez International

16.00 | Panel: Meeting water needs efficiently as capacity demands rise

  • Populations are rising, industries are expanding, food security is becoming more prominent and countries are turning to new revenue streams such as green hydrogen
  • Water-stressed countries, where desalination is imperative, have increasing demands on a precious resource
  • At the same time, governments are introducing decarbonisation targets - how does the industry meet these demands? 

Moderator: Robert Bryniak


Golden Sands Management

Dr. Omar Asad

Asset Manager, Shuweihat Complex,


Sameer Al Khateeb

Lead, Sustainable Water Desalination


Lu’ay Khdeir

Regional Water Market Director, Middle East,


Mel Makdessi

Business Development Director, Utilities

& Environment, Middle East, Jacobs

16.30 | Close of day 2

Wednesday 18th January

MC: Dr. Evan Paleologos

Professor of Civil Engineering,

Abu Dhabi University

10.30 | Presentation: Attracting capital investment into food technology

  • How do governments and local food producers attract the investment required to create a commercial scale, long-term food tech market?
  • How does the industry use technology to marry food production with water security?
  • How encourage entrepreneurship and support small foodtech innovation?
  • Does the market need more long-term deals on pricing to attract investment?

Presented by:

Mohamed Al Dhaheri

Executive Chairman,

RainMKrs Capital

10.45 | Panel: Building resiliency and supply chain efficiency into a decarbonised food system

  • This discussion focuses on the many approaches can be taken to improve food security and introduce greater supply chain efficiency, including technology, greater localisation and research
  • How close can the region get to localisation of production and food independence?
  • What technologies are significantly changing approaches to local food production?
  • What net effects would this have of promoting a low-carbon food system?

Confirmed Speakers:

Moderator: Dr. Mohamed Ali

Partner - Food Practice Lead,


Dr Mohamed Hamyd Dawoud

Advisor - Water Resources, Environment &

Quality, Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi

Kyle Wagner

Head of Operations

Madar Farms

Yazen Al Kodmani

Deputy General Manager

Emirates Bio Farm

Damian Malins

Venturing Projects Director,

Fera Science

11.30 | Panel: Future of farming: Indoor crop factories

  • GCC countries are striving for food security. But water stress and hot, dusty conditions do not suit mass farming
  • Is the future of food in the GCC indoor crop factories, growing edible plants under strict climate-controlled conditions?
  • How will a move to indoor farming change the industry, but ensure quality and taste (a common complaint) - and will this bring food security, whilst meeting the region's energy and water use ambitions
  • What crops can't be grown - and will this change within the coming 10 years?

Confirmed Speakers:

Moderator: Jana Elkova

Strategy & Entrepreneurship Expert,

Ministry of Economy, UAE

Shaikh Dr. Majid Al Qassimi


Soma Mater

Majed Halawi

VP of Growth,

Pure Harvest Smart Farms

Fadi Sbaiti

General Manager


Dr. Deane Falcone

Chief Scientific Officer

Crop One

12.15 | Presentations: Using technology to improve food production/security

  • Each presentation will explore a different aspect of technology use to either improve efficiencies in crop production or food security.

12.15 | Water innovation for marginal environments

Presented by:

Dr. Tarifa Ajeif Al Zaabi

Director-General, International

Center for Biosaline Agriculture

12.30 | Nexus Innovations in Water-Energy-Food Systems

Presented by:

Dr. Shamal Mohammed

Director AgriTech and R&D,


12.45 | Monitoring crop production with IoT

Presented by:

Burak Karapinar


QS Monitor

13.00 | Break

14.30 | Presentations: Protecting against storm water - and capturing run off for reuse

  • Extreme rain events can cause rapid flooding, loss of life and financial hardship. What can Middle East countries do to better capture storm water?
  • Can storm water be an unpredictable but useful component in a country's total water system?
  • How is it treated and stored?

14.30 | Presentation 1

Chandra Dake

Executive Chairman-Group CEO,

Dake Group

Dr. Yuming Su

Vice Director, State Key Laboratory of

Silica Sand Resources Utilization

14.50 | Presentation 2

Gerhard Cornelsen

Program Manager

Dornier Consulting International

15.10 | Presentation: Wastewater Reuse for Irrigation: Abu Dhabi

Presented by:

Dr. Mohamed Hamyd Dawoud

Advisor - Water Resources, Environment

Quality, Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi

15.30 | Presentation: Tapping into wastewater resource recovery

  • An assessment on how wastewater (including industrial wastewater) can be taken from a waste product to reusable products
  • Insight into the opportunities and challenges of reducing carbon emissions and reaching a point of having decarbonised recycled water

Mohamed Ali Al Jneibi

Business Resilience Director,

Abu Dhabi Sewerage Services Company

15.45 | Panel: Decarbonising water through treated effluent

  • Better and increased treatment of wastewater reduces pressure on desalination
  • What technologies will improve water treatment, its modelling and industry decision making?
  • How will better modelling upfront improve long term planning for wastewater treatment?

Confirmed Speakers:

Dr. Evan Paleologos

Professor of Civil Engineering,

Abu Dhabi University

Philipp Raichle

Director Applications, Engineering,

Product Management & Tendering, Xylem

Abdul Qadir Malik

Head of Capital Project Delivery,

RAK Wastewater Agency

Mayyada Salem Al Bardan

Manager of Research & Studies Department

Sharjah Electricity & Water Authority

Dr. Titia de Mes

Sustainability Manager,

Abu Dhabi Sewerage Services Company

Vishal Sharma

Business Development

Eflo-Air, Concorde-Corodex Group

16.30 | Close of day 3