I attended the 2017 Minnesota Water Technology Summit hosted at the Metropolitan club. This event had international representation of key challenges and projects happening from around the world. In addition, local speakers added their perspectives from the water companies that they are working in.
Students also participated showcasing projects they are working on in our universities. There was plenty of Q&A for each speaker that allowed good involvement from the audience both in questions and input to key subjects.
International representation spanned: China, Phillipines, Singapore, India, New Zealand, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, and Brazil. The challenges and scale of solutions being faced international was quite impressive and insightful in terms of trends to come to other nations.
What was completely missing from the conversation for recognition of other regions which are vastly leading in areas of cluster development and innovation ecosystems. While Minnesota fields some very large companies in the water industry it was apparent that they are not leading any efforts to create Minnesota as a global leader in terms of solving the grand challenges around water. Seems like other cities around the world will become the concentrated hubs of companies, education and government policy leaders despite what might be mistaken as a lead in water locally. With so many new industries developing around all the grand challenges, it is a race for visionary regional leaders to put their regions on a development plan that will see these industries attract and workforce grow to serve the world.
See more photos of the event and speakers in the photo gallery