UKWIR Virtual Annual Conference

15 December 2020, ONLINE



The interactive event, the first of its kind to be hosted by UKWIR, follows closely on heels of the launch of the UK water industry’s Innovation Strategy. It is an opportunity for sector specialists to come together with innovators from other industries to share ideas and experiences, and debate how best research and innovation will deliver industry priorities.

View the full agenda


Innovation means creating value from new ideas – whether it’s academia, the supply chain, water company employees, stakeholders and experts from other sectors. UKWIR’s goal is to use those ideas to create a common platform for research and innovation in the UK and drive the changes that are needed to meet future challenges, such as population growth, climate change and resilience, through 12 Big Questions.

There are also other emerging opportunities to explore including digital transformation, the social contract and sustainability. The key to achieving these ambitious outcomes will be through the effective collaboration of everyone with a vested interest in water. This event provides a great opportunity for senior representatives from the industry, and beyond, to come together not only to share ideas and experiences, but also to identify the part they can all play in helping answer UKWIR’s Big Questions.

Key speaker profiles

Mike Elliott is Technology Director of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team. After achieving a Master of Engineering in Aeronautical Engineering followed by a PhD in Aerodynamics from Imperial College London, Mike embarked upon what would quickly become a steep rise through the ranks of Formula One aerodynamicists – achieving significant success along the way.

Professor Dragan Savić FREng is CEO at KWR Water Research Institute in the Netherlands. Before joining KWR he was Director – and co-founder – of the Centre for Water Systems in Exeter, an internationally recognised group for excellence in water and environmental science research. Dragan Savić was the first Professor of Hydro-Informatics in the UK having held this post University of Exeter since 2001.

Heidi Mottram OBE is CEO at Northumbrian Water, a large water and wastewater company. She began her career with British Rail in the mid-1980s and had a number of roles in GNER, before joining Midland Mainline in 1999 as Operations Director. She was also Commercial Director for Arriva Trains Northern before becoming Managing Director of Northern Rail Limited, the UK’s largest rail franchise.

John Russell is the Senior Director, Strategy and Planning at Ofwat. Before that he worked in Shell’s group strategy and business environment teams. Prior to working at Shell, John had a long career in the British Civil Service where he was the Chief Operating Officer for Infrastructure UK in HM Treasury. He has also had roles as Deputy Director for Growth and Productivity in the Treasury and Head of household energy efficiency policy in the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change.

Jon Rathjen leads the Water Industry Team in the Scottish Government with policy responsibility for the Scottish water industry including sponsorship of the public corporation Scottish Water and the new Hydro Nation agenda. Jon has over 25 years’ experience as a Public Servant, with experience in front line service delivery and policy responsibilities.

Please note: This event is being managed by Aqua Enviro on behalf of UKWIR.

Please visit to find out more about the 12 Big Questions and the work UKWIR do.



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Cost per person
£90 (ex. 20% VAT)

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Clare Hunter

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