H2O partner Meadows Center to sponsor Texas’ first water technology roadmap
On February 25, 2015 the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment along with other partners will host a water sustainability-oriented forum bringing together principals of water-related companies, associations, university research centers and other Texas research institutes, and others interested in accelerating growth of Texas’ water conservation technologies, industries, and sustainable water use. The goal is to prioritize and frame key milestones for a bold plan – to begin building a water technology roadmap to guide Texas toward global leadership in water technology.
Convened by the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, AccelerateH2O, RCN-CE3SAR, and STAR Park, and sponsored by the Wells Fargo Foundation, this forum follows recent work to identify the most critical needs for water technology in Texas. This forum will take the results of that work and further focus/refine the technology targets and then define the current scientific and technical capacity of the State’s centers of research to address the needs, beginning the process of building a water technology roadmap for Texas.
The Water Technology Roadmap Forum will connect the dots across geographies, industries, campuses, and end-users in these areas. We envision the Roadmap Forum ultimately producing:
- The first-ever Texas water technology roadmap.
- A means to identify and update pathways for linking research, expertise, facilities and programs that address the ‘supply against demand’ scenarios identified by participants.
- “Innovation teams” within a virtual “collaboratory” that crosses disciplines, campuses, technical networks, and resources.
- Basic information and networks that will enable more effective actions to support Texas R&D, testing, and commercialization efforts, helping Texas to become a global hub of water innovation.
Why a Water Technology Roadmap?
It’s a tool that Texans have used in the past to attain such global leadership in energy and agriculture, transistors and microprocessors, and life sciences and semiconductors. A Water Technology Roadmap will help set us on a path to solve our most pressing water challenges, identify our strengths and gaps in capabilities to respond, and then leverage identifiable AND evolving technologies. In short, a water technology roadmap will show Texans the many connections and specific routes to accelerate commercialization, innovation, sustainable water use, and economic competitiveness.
The water technology roadmap forum process:
Texas A&M University Dean of the College of Architecture, Jorge Vanegas, will lead the one-day facilitated charrette to include active involvement by all participants. Dr. Vanegas is well-known for his facilitation skills and is providing support to the forum through sponsor, RCN-CE3SAR where he is a member of the Steering Committee.
To begin, Water Technology Roadmap Forum participants will examine the most critical issues facing residential, commercial, agricultural, and utility-based water conservation, and focus in on exactly which aspects of these issues can be addressed through technology innovation and market-driven solutions. Moving from a generalized discussion to a more specific level of the scientific and technical, participants will prioritize urgent and near-term needs and gaps from an end-user, market perspective.
Based on this framing of issues, participants will work in smaller cross-function groups of the research and IP development community, and demand side of technology (such as suppliers, industry, and utility representatives) to define scenarios for collaboration, coordination, and alignment of immediate opportunities (proof of concept, pilot projects, demonstration and validation).
A final full-group session will create an initial list of ‘targets of opportunity’ for which participants may seek to continue their discussion, engagement, and partnership.
Immediately following the Water Technology Roadmap Forum, information collected during the course of the charrette will be used to begin the process of drafting a water technology roadmap of ‘supply and demand’ around technologies and capabilities emerging from the State’s academic research institutions, non-profit organizations, and research foundations.