Wisconsin’s strength in water technology was on full display on March 21 at the Water Industry Workshop and Procurement Seminar with The World Bank in Milwaukee, Wis. The World Bank emphasised how important water-related innovation is to its projects which include $114 billion in global infrastructure development, historically resulting in large amounts of treated water loss in pipes and meters.
Organised by the U.S. Commercial Service, the World Bank selected Milwaukee to host the only water-related U.S. procurement event because it recognised the city as a global leader in water technology. This recognition is backed by a recent Brookings Institution report featuring the city’s water technology sector as one of the best models of an industry cluster in the nation. “Led by The Water Council, Milwaukee’s water cluster has established the region as a top global hub for innovation and solutions to the world’s water challenges,” the report says.
Not only did the World Bank get exposure to Milwaukee’s water technology leaders, Wisconsin’s water technology businesses in attendance learned how to best partner with the World Bank on solving the world’s water challenges.
“Of all the things the World Bank has to tackle – energy, roads, food, health – the fact that they put an emphasis on water technology speaks to the importance of this resource in countries across the planet,” said Dean Amhaus, president and CEO of The Water Council in Wisconsin. “The World Bank is making water technology a priority and recognises that Wisconsin can be the leader in delivering solutions.”
Following the seminar, Amhaus was invited to attend and speak at World Bank Water Week, April 2-4, 2019, in Washington D.C. He will talk about Wisconsin’s water innovation ecosystem. This invitation further demonstrates the World Bank’s desire to learn from and engage with Wisconsin’s water technology leaders.
“When it comes to water technology, clearly Wisconsin is now on the radar of World Bank leaders,” Amhaus said. “They had certainly had some knowledge about Wisconsin’s water technology cluster, but to be here and see first-hand and meet with some of our water technology experts, they definitely now know who they can count on.”
Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) Vice President of International Business Development Katy Sinnott said, “Wisconsin’s water technology leadership is a key economic asset we promote in our global business development initiatives. The fact that the U.S. Commercial Service and The World Bank brought this event to Milwaukee is a testament to the rising influence Wisconsin companies have in building sustainable water solutions worldwide.”