Real time data-driven pathways for robust water systems

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The first webinar of AIWW 2021 will be based on the topic: Water as a carrier of information: Harnessing the potential of data in digitalization in water.

Real time date-driven pathways for robust water systems: critical role of utilities, benefits and co-benefits

What are the real time data-driven mechanisms, pathways and tools to build resilient and robust water systems for utilities?


Rik Thijssen

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Smart Water Strategy Manager
Anglian Water Services
Currently working as Smart Water Strategy Manager for Anglian Water. I have the privilege of leading a team of high performing subject matter experts focused on the development of Smart Water Systems, driving innovation and digital transformation within the business to meet the challenges facing the water sector.
Civil Engineer and PHD candidate
Technical University of Cologne, Germany
Amrita Gautam is a Civil Engineer, pursuing her doctoral research (final phase) in Technical University of Cologne, Germany, with special focus in Hydro-Informatics: Water Supply Engineering and Management, having work experiences from various ‘United Nations (UN) Organizations and Research Projects’ in Nepal, Germany, Mozambique, Brazil, Canada & USA. As a Young Water Professional, Amrita has been involved in World Youth Parliament for Water; International Water Association; Soroptimist International; Youth for the Rhine; and Girls in Tech – Nepal. She was awarded with ‘Women with Vision 2018’, received Soroptimist International of Europe (SIE) Scholarship Award in 2019 and got selected as an Ambassador of Rising Smart Water Professionals (RiSWP/SWAN) in 2021. Her ongoing doctoral research is about “Water Supply and Quality Monitoring via Emerging Technologies”, and the case study area is Pokhara Metropolitan City (PMC), Nepal. She has founded a research initiative - drinkPani (, which refers to 'Drinking Water Information Kit' and believes in ‘Shaping Digital Water Future’.
Specialist Process Technology
Born in the Netherlands in 1989. Studied Civil Engineering with specialisation Sanitary Engineering at the Delft University of Technology. Since 2016 he works at Vitens as a process engineer, specializing in innovation, new treatment technology and digitalisation. Currently he works on developing a novel membrane degassing system for methane removal and reclamation from anaerobic groundwater, on digital simulation twins of groundwater treatment plants and on hybrid treatment systems to cover the rising water demand.
Manager Business Development
Rik Thijssen is the Manager of Business Development at Vitens, the largest water utility in The Netherlands, and member of the management team. Rik is responsible for driving innovation in Vitens as part of the company’s strategy. Innovation, smart grids, digitalization, sustainability, circular economy, customer technology and datascience are the main topics. He is heavily involved in the Vitens Smart Grid programme. Rik is joining Vitens for 8 years, holds a BSc in microbiology, and is a graduate of The Academy for Management at Groningen University and is member of the innovation & technology commission of the National Employers’ Organization.
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