Revealing our Bristol Water, Bucks Council, EA and Severn Trent Keynotes for WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2022


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We’re delighted to announce our WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2022 keynotes on behalf of the Environment Agency (EA), Buckinghamshire Council, Severn Trent and Bristol Water:

“Project Groundwater – Innovation, Collaboration and Challenge in Flood Risk Management” – Flood risk and the adaption to it has perhaps never been so well funded in the UK, and yet flooding from groundwater is poorly understood, barely monitored, often not anticipated and very difficult to deal with. It can be hugely devastating due to the longer durations associated with high groundwater levels, but never draws significant attention or funding as it affects pockets of communities across certain geological areas.

Over a period of 6 years and with £7.3 million of initial funding, Project Groundwater aims to innovate and improve in all areas of risk management, from both the perspective of the risk management authorities and also that of the affected communities. Project Groundwater is led by Programme Manager, Jed Ramsay, from Buckinghamshire Council’s Strategic Flood Management Team.

In this keynote, Jed will be joined by the EA’s Flood and Coastal Resilience Innovation Programmes Manager, Tom de la Rosa, who will provide an introduction to the national context of the £200 million FCRIP and its ambition to 2027. Jed will outline how Bucks are working through a large scale partnership with 33 organisations (ranging from Thames Water, Isle Utilities, the Environment Agency and the Forestry Commission to other local authorities such as Hertfordshire and Oxfordshire County Councils, Luton and Slough Borough Councils, and West Berkshire District Council) to develop, trial and adopt improved practices in how groundwater flooding is managed. This will cover areas of monitoring, mapping, modelling, warning, responding, prevention, resilience and damage reduction, plus an emphasis on research, evaluation and legacy.

“A Digital Journey to Transforming the Water Sector” – The UK water sector is driving towards a net-zero future where end to end processes are fully optimised for changing conditions and assets never fail unexpectedly. Historically, the water sector have only had access to proprietary or point solutions providing limited optimisation capability. However, by combining operational technology with digital models it should be possible to predict the future, connect the real and digital worlds, and utilise Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence to automatically optimise for changing conditions.

Severn Trent is looking to drive digital innovation and in this keynote, Innovation Architect, James Ballard, will talk about some of their key activities, successes and lessons learned.

A taster of James’ presentation highlights includes:

  • The design and deployment of the UK’s first storm preparation ready intelligent sewage pumping station;
  • The development by Severn Trent’s in-house data science team of the “SPS dynamic risk matrix” – a dynamic flooding prediction tool for sewage pumping stations enabling proactive interventions;
  • A £3m project awarded by OFWAT through the water breakthrough challenge to design and build “the artificial intelligence of things” – a fully autonomous waste catchment powered by artificial intelligence and smart sensors.
  • Further experiences of transformative innovation in action to be revealed on the day!

“Enabling Data Driven Insights within Bristol Water” – The city of Bristol has always been synonymous with innovation: whether it’s Brunel, the aviation industry or Aardman studios; it’s always been a place of creative forward thinkers. Marc Tite leads the Asset Strategy and Planning team at Bristol Water from whom, every day, 1.2 million people rely for clean, fresh drinking water:

“Since the creation of Bristol Water in 1846, our purpose has been, and continues to be, to make a positive impact on the lives of our customers, our communities, our colleagues and the environment – above and beyond the delivery of pure and reliable water”.

In this keynote, Marc will explain how Asset Management within Bristol Water is driving change to elevate the customer experience:

“We are working with industry experts to develop future technologies to gain insights into how our assets are behaving. These various technologies help us to prevent leaks, manage Dam safety, improve water quality, support customer engagement, deliver near real time network modelling to name a few”.


WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2022 takes place in person at The BCEC, Birmingham, on Thursday 10th November (8.30am-2.00pm). This brand new addition to the Smart Classes events portfolio will show key buyer side stakeholders how deploying the latest digital technology-enabled solutions, data-driven strategies and best practices can help manage the distribution and management of water resources across our cities and regions, and also offers utilities an opportunity to improve efficiency and customer service whilst reducing water scarcity.

Qualifying delegates include commissioning, procurement, trialling and partnering leads, senior influencers, strategic decision makers, environmental managers, policy makers and planners from UK water companies and utilities, wastewater and sewer operators, lead local flood authorities (unitary authorities and county councils), city/borough/metropolitan councils, district councils, combined authorities, highways authorities, prime contractors, general insurers, large water consumers, central governmental and regulatory bodies (e.g. Defra, DCLG, Ofwat, Environment Agency, DWI, SEPA), independent industry and consumer organisations (e.g. Water UK, CCW) etc.

Core themes at a Water Management Smart Class range from smart leakage detection and miniaturisation of sensors, smarter pressure management, asset tracking and connected water operations, modelling and simulation (incl. digital twins), the water company of the future, smart water gully maintenance and utilising smart meters effectively, to digital apps and platforms for demand management, smart telemetry systems for managing flood risk, sustainable drainage systems, smart sewers and wastewater management, innovations in water purification, smart billing and payments, harnessing AI for automation of customer engagement, and using real-time analytics and drones for monitoring water quality and mapping assets.

In addition to our inspirational keynotes (followed by Q&As), WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2022 will feature: Rapid fire innovator presentations (plus Q&As) delivered by leading technology experts and thought leaders, each representing a priority water management innovation theme and area of smart water application; Deeper-dive roundtable consultations with speakers and specialists to help hone delegates’ smart strategies and address some of their specific water management challenges; Further networking opportunities with peers and pioneers over breakfast, drinks and cooked lunch, and all at no charge!

If you meet the delegate qualification criteria described, REGISTER NOW to secure your free place and join us for what promises to be an insightful half day of collaboration and knowledge exchange!


Up to 5 innovators/solution vendors can participate at a Smart Class in an “Innovation Sponsor” capacity: Check out our Event Sponsorship page for full details on “Smart Class Innovation Sponsorship Packages” or contact us by phone or e-mail if you’d like to discuss this option further.

In addition to WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2022 on November 10th, our forward schedule includes Transport, Emissions & Air Quality, Public Realm & Urban Spaces, Waste Management, Energy and Health & Assisted Living editions. Peruse our Testimonials page (or the individual Smart Class event pages on our website and “Retrospective Round-ups” published on the Smart Classes Knowledge Base) for feedback from previous delegates, sponsors and supporters!

Remaining 2022 Smart Classes

2023 and Beyond:

NB. The supporting website page (and registration) for the 2023 Smart Class in italics will go live in December, after its 2022 edition has taken place.

Feature Image Source: K-H. Leuders from Pixabay

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WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Classes show key buyer side stakeholders how deploying the latest digital technology-enabled solutions and best practices can help manage the distribution and management of water resources, and also offers utilities an opportunity to improve efficiency and customer service whilst reducing water scarcity. WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2022 will be hosted in Birmingham on November 10th.


   Birmingham, UK

Sponsored by
Project Centre
Green Valley Group
British Water

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