German Water Partnership
The German water sector’s innovation platform
Through a number of initiatives and in its capacity as one of the largest donor countries for development projects in the water sector, Germany has become a major player in interna-tional water policy in recent years. This also creates expectations for what Germany can contribute to solving water management problems in many parts of the world in the future.
At the same time, the water sector is an international market of the future. The investment needed to ensure proper water supply and wastewater disposal in Eastern Europe, in the emerging countries of Asia and Central and South America and, not least of all, in developing countries, is enormous. In addition, the demand for innovative solutions for the efficient use of scarce water resources, for example, in industry and agriculture, will increase globally. This is not just a question of adapted and innovative technology, but also of content-related and organisational concepts for water and water body management.
For many years, there has been consensus in the German water industry and in the political debate on the modernisation of the German water sector that there is a need to improve the international image of the German water sector, to raise its profile and pool its diverse range of expertise and services more effectively. The German government’s 2006 report outlining the modernisation strategy for Germany’s water industry also highlights this need.
Against this background, in 2007 and 2008, the German government worked together with dedicated representatives of the German water sector and water researchers to develop key points for the creation of a joint innovation platform for water with the involvement of busi-ness, policy-makers and the scientific community. This initiative gave rise to the German Water Partnership, which was founded as an association on 8 April 2008.
German Water Partnership e. V. is a successful innovative network with around 350 mem-bers (as at: July 2014), which brings together private and public companies from the water sector with professional associations and institutions from industry and research under a sin-gle roof. The initiative is supported by the five federal ministries responsible for the environ-ment, research, development, economy and foreign affairs.
The German Water Partnership pools the activities, information and innovations of the Ger-man water sector to strengthen the competitive situation on international markets and play a role in solving water management problems around the world with integrated and sustainable approaches. The solutions are adapted to the problems of selected countries or regions in specially established country forums.
The German Water Partnership is thus the primary contact of the German water sector for enquires from outside Germany.