Water Vision

Our Vision

Building a Water-Smart Society

In our journey towards building a Water-Smart Society, Water Europe’s vision emphasizes the ‘Value of Water’. This vision is a call to action for policymakers, researchers, technology developers, innovators, and all stakeholders engaged in water management. We aim to inspire collaborative efforts in creating a society that is water secure, sustainable, and resilient. 

Our focus extends to addressing global societal challenges and fostering the development of innovative solutions in the global water market, all while ensuring the human right to water in terms of availability, accessibility, affordability, acceptability, and quality.

What is a Water-Smart Society?

Value of Water

To build a Water-Smart Society, Water Europe has developed a vision with 3 key objectives:

Our Model

Water Europe’s model for a Water-Smart Society is a harmonious blend of one core value, three key objectives, and five innovation concepts, all intricately interwoven. This model creates a synergistic ‘flying wheel’ effect, propelling us towards achieving a Water-Smart Society. It emphasizes the crucial interplay between our core value and the strategic objectives of water security, sustainability, and resilience, all underpinned by innovative concepts in circular water, resilient infrastructure, multiple water uses, inclusive governance, and digital water management. This comprehensive approach is our blueprint for a future where water is valued and sustainably managed.

Innovation concepts

Innovation is the cornerstone of our approach to a Water-Smart Society. Water Europe’s five key innovation concepts – circular water, resilient infrastructure, multiple waters use, inclusive governance, and digital management – are the building blocks of our transformative vision.

Our approach redefines how we use water, focusing on mining the value in water and maximizing circularity to ensure every drop is fully utilized.

By tapping into a variety of water sources, including rainwater, groundwater, surface water and recycled water, we’re building a more adaptable and sustainable water ecosystem.

Our management of water is being revolutionized by technology, enabling real-time tracking and data-driven decisions for optimal use of water.

Our aim is to engage all voices in the water community for sustainable governance. By valuing everyone’s input, we seek to create a cooperative atmosphere in which we shape Europe’s water future together.

Our goal is to craft water infrastructures that are both durable and adaptable, integrating grey and green solutions ready to withstand floods and water scarcity exacerbated by climate change and maintain the functionality of the water system.

Water Vision 2024

With the collective insights of our members and key stakeholders, Water Europe introduces an updated Vision document that charts a strategic course towards a Water-Smart Society by 2030. This document not only envisions a society that thrives on sustainable water management and climate resilience but also aligns with Europe’s green and digital transformation goals. Download the document and dive into a future where the value of water is recognised and preserved for generations to come.

Watch our vision on YouTube

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Water Resilience:
Achieving long-term resilience, so that natural and anthropogenic water systems can withstand unexpected disruptive events, averting serious consequences, such as droughts and floods, while guaranteeing the reliability of the water system.

Water Sustainability:
Ensuring water infrastructure, management and use that are economically and environmentally sustainable, in a way that meets current ecological, social and economic needs, without compromising the ability to meet these needs in the future.

Water Security:
Safeguarding sustainable access to sufficient quantities of affordable and fit-for-purpose water, in order to preserve the health of the population and ecosystems, foster the socio-economic development of society, and ensure their protection against water-related disasters, such as those resulting from climate change.

Circular Water:
Circular water system that minimises water losses, captures and exploits the value in water, and fosters water security, sustainability and resilience.

Inclusive Water:
establish a water system whose governance balances the interests of all stakeholders in its design, management and maintenance.

Digital Water:
Exploit the benefits of the extreme interconnectivity of people, devices and processes, and create capillary networks capable of monitoring the water system, starting at its multiple sources through to the individual end-user, thus generating continuous flows of valuable data for innovative decision-support systems at different governance levels.

Multiple Waters:
Incorporate a wide range of water sources and qualities (groundwater and surface water, rainwater, brackish water, brine, grey water, black water, recycled water) into a water-secure, resilient and sustainable water system.

Resilient Water:
Create a resilient and reliable hybrid grey and green water system, designed to withstand severe external and internal shocks – such as climate-change induced floods and droughts – without compromising essential functions

This core value reflects the centrality of water as a human right and its fundamental role in our society. A multifaceted role that includes enabling all economic activities, underpinning societal functions related to citizen health and well-being, while also representing a source of economic value generated from the extraction and valorisation of raw materials and energy contained in water systems, thereby offering a unique sustainable source to serve a circular economy.