The IWA Global Water Award recognises those individuals who, through innovative leadership and practice, have made a significant contribution to a world in which water is wisely managed. Showcasing exceptional individuals who have changed industry norms to create lasting progress, IWAs Global Water Award aims to recognise and reward those water innovators that are driving change.
IWA Global Water Award
The IWA Global Water Awards rewards an individual that has shown exceptional imagination, foresight or resilience to overcome obstacles and challenge industry norms to create new directions and open new possibilities for sustainable water management and practice. She or he must have worked inclusively and with professionals from across sectors and disciplines to create an innovative water solution/management practice that impacts/influences broader sustainable development.
The following criteria form the basis for selection:
- Demonstrated excellence in science, technology, management or policy
- Vision, leadership, knowledge, persistence, creating new directions and opening new fields
- Recognised internationally within the membership of IWA
How to nominate?
In order to nominate a peer to win the IWA Global Water Award, please submit online the reasons why the individual will qualify. To fill in the online form swiftly see below the different criteria you will be asked to fill in.
What is the nomination process?
Name, Affiliation, Country
An executive summary outlining the main reason for the nomination (maximum 150 words)
VISION – The individual has shown exceptional imagination, foresight or resilience to overcome obstacles and challenge industry norms to create new directions and open new possibilities for sustainable water management and practice. (100 words)
LEADERSHIP – The individual has demonstrated exceptional leadership qualities in his/her endeavours. (100 words)
IMPACT – The individual must have worked inclusively and with professionals from across sectors and disciplines to create an innovative water solution/management practice that impacts/influences broader sustainable development. (100 words)
Am I allowed to nominate myself?
Self-nomination for the award is not permitted. You will need to be nominated by a peer to be eligible.
If the deadline is over and I forgot to submit a nomination. May I still send my nomination to be considered for an awards?
If the nomination for the award is closed. It means that the judging process has started. If you did not submit your nomination yet, unfortunately it won’t be possible to be considered for the award.
Is more than one person able nominate me for the award?
You are able to be nominated by others, however only one nomination will be considered.
I am based in a different country then my nominator(s). Are they still able to nominate me?
Yes, submission is open across different continents.
Am I able to send my nomination in a different language?
We are not able to receive a nomination from different languages. The only language we are able to get your submission is in English.
Do I need to submit my nomination via the nomination file?
We will only accept nominations that have a nomination file attached. Any documents that do not follow the guidelines will not be accepted.
Mark van Loosdrecht
Bianca Jimenez Cisneros
Catarina de Albuquerque
2020 IWA Global Water Award
Marcos Von Sperling
Inspirational academic Marcos von Sperling has won the acclaimed IWA Global Water Award at the Digital World Water Congress.
Professor von Sperling, who works at Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais in Brazil, won the award for his work on wastewater and water pollution. Marcos’ research has focused on innovative solutions which have practical application. His research, which has influenced policy in Latin American and beyond, has inspired many students, researchers and policy-makers. Learn more…
2018 IWA Global Water Award
Tony Wong is the winner of the 2018 IWA Global Water Award. The award recognises Wong’s pioneering programme of work – the water sensitive cities approach- that uses a unique socio-technical approach to concurrently address the social, environmental and economic challenges of traditional urban water management. Learn more about Tony Wong…
2016 IWA Global Water Award
Catarina de Albuquerque
Catarina de Albuquerque is the winner of the 2016 IWA Global Water Award. The award recognises the exceptional role she has played as the driving force behind the recognition of the Human Rights to Water and Sanitation. In 2008 she became the first UN Special Rapporteur on the right to safe drinking water and sanitation, having played a pivotal role in the recognition of water and sanitation as human rights by the UN General Assembly. Learn more.
2014 IWA Global Water Award
Dr. Qiu Baoxing has made outstanding contributions to manage and improve water pollution and water environmental governance in the face of China’s rapid urbanisation and industrialisation. Under his leadership between 2001-2013, the number of wastewater treatment plants in urban areas of China dramatically increased from 506 to 3513, a more than seven-fold increase. This equates to a total capacity increase from 35 million to 150 million cubic meter of wastewater being treated each day, a four-fold increase. Learn more…
2012 IWA Global Water Award
Dr. Rhodes Trussell served for more than ten years on EPA’s Science Advisory Board, on several committees for the National Academies, including as Chair of their Water Science and Technology Board. For the International Water Association, Dr. Trussell has served on the Scientific and Technical Council, Editorial Boards, and on the Program Committee.
2010 IWA Global Water Award
Professor Emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley, USA
Blanca Jiménez Cisneros
Professor National Autonomous University of Mexico
2008 IWA Global Water Award
Water Corporation of Western Australia, Australia
Mark van Loosdrecht
Professor Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
2006 IWA Global Water Award
Daniel A Okun
Kenan Professor of Environmental Engineering Emeritus, University of Northern California, USA
Professor Daniel A. Okun, was hailed worldwide for his groundbreaking work in identifying pristine water sources (including Chapel Hill’s Cane Creek Reservoir), water management, water supply, pollution control, water reclamation and reuse, and watershed protection issues.
During his career, Okun worked in 89 countries and consulted with municipal and legislative planning committees throughout the United States. Among professor Okun’s many contributions, he helped design a water treatment plant in Bangkok, Thailand; establish a graduate program in sanitary engineering in Lima, Peru; and studied water supply and pollution control in China for the World Bank. At home in Chapel Hill, he led the campaign to build Cane Creek Dam and Reservoir in the 1980s to ensure the most pristine water source possible for Chapel Hill and the UNC campus. Learn more.