We can make a global impact with Israel’s clean water technologies.
Progress for Israel’s water technology toolkit is a strategic requirement. Providing environmentally sound, efficient means to maintain and develop sources of clean water is among the greatest challenges facing Israel and the world in the new millennium.
Water remediation presents us with tremendous opportunities as well as challenges. As an acknowledged leader in this field, Israel stands to become a global hub for innovation in water treatment, a role that can provide crystal clear economic, social and political benefits. As well, water technology development can become a compelling focus for building a local water industry that is more cohesive, more capable and more productive.
Over the past year, it has become evident that true progress in water business development is beyond the scope of a single, or even several, independent organizations. The water industry is complex and multi-disciplinary. In fact, our future success in water remediation requires the commercialization of new technologies based in nano-science, biology and microelectronics, as well as marketing Israel’s unique R&D capabilities in these and other fields. These efforts demand a dramatic, paradigm-level shift in our approach.
Regardless of the technologies used and the profoundly different vocabularies and skills demanded by each field, we must address the overriding need for ongoing, fruitful interactions among all members of Israel’s water community, and we must adopt the global business-oriented approach that has resulted in such outstanding successes for Israeli telecoms, networking, biotech and other industries. Water is high tech now.
In March, a handful of leading executives from Israeli industry, academia and government formed the Israel Water Forum to help make water technology and water business development a winning national priority. Only two months later, in a meeting attended by over 40 stakeholders, a Forum steering committee was established, together with specific objectives for success.
We have made an excellent start. With such broad partnership and support from Israel’s major water research institutes and large water industry firms, we can actively engage the participation of both established and new water technology businesses, labs and organizations in Israel, as well as interested partners outside of Israel. We must further broaden our Forum to include clean water technology buyers, high tech industry developers and venture finance interests.
Our work is not to replace existing efforts and organizations, but to supercharge them with unprecedented business influence.
Among the Forum’s goals: to triple Israel’s share of the global water technology market to US $4 billion annually, to increase Israeli entrepreneurial and start-up activities in water technology related businesses by 15% annually, and to secure $100 million in funding for Israeli water technology R&D and higher education.
The Israel Water Forum program will include both traditional business activities such as professional meetings and an annual conference, and newer proactive communications channels such as Internet portals, industry research reporting and public relations campaigns.
Special task forces will be created to promote market awareness, improve understanding of key technology and environmental issues, and generate beneficial collaborations among academic and industry interests, both locally and globally. Entrepreneurial programs will be used to foster innovation for Israel’s existing water industries, and promote growth for new water-related industries.
The Forum is a membership-based organization, managed primarily by a voluntary board of directors with vested interests in the progress of Israeli water technologies as well as the profitability of Israeli water industries. The Forum program, and the Forum itself, are being implemented in measured phases to ensure its ongoing effectiveness and value.
We already have the infrastructure, the know-how and the motivation to make Israel’s clean water technologies a global presence. With creation of the Israel Water Forum, we now have the means for unified focus, synergy and marketing that are imperative to our success in the global water business.
We invite you to benefit from this effort by becoming a contributing Forum member. For more information, please email our coordinator, Hagai Langstadter.