Water Utility of the Future

The International WaterCentre at Griffith University recently welcomed 27 participants of the Australian Awards Indonesia 2-week Short Course ‘Water Utility of the Future’.  Participants were from a range of backgrounds from national level Ministries concerned with strategy, planning and financing of water and wastewater infrastructure and services to water utilities themselves at local government level. Water and wastewater service planning and delivery is a national and a local responsibility in Indonesia.

The IWC team led the design and delivery of the course program, which was designed to assist participants in learning systemically from Australia’s experience in water reform, water investment and financing, water tariff setting and price regulation, water policy, utility strategic asset planning, digitisation, workforce planning and performance benchmarking along with circular economy approaches for water including water recycling, biochar production and biogas to grid production, planning for climate change impacts and addressing gender equality, disability and inclusion (GEDSI).

Course highlights included:

  • Site visits to the Lockyer Valley with the Hon. Paul Lucas, to learn about regional water security planning; to Wivenhoe Dam with Seqwater, to Logan City Council’s Wastewater Treatment Plant with Nutrient Capture; and to Fitzgibbon’s Chase (with Bligh Tanner) to see urban stormwater management examples.
  • Industry guest lectures from Urban Utilities, Unitywater, Seqwater, Queensland Government (QCA, QRA, DRDMW), Aurecon, Queensland Water Directorate, Lean Finance, John McEvoy, The World Bank, Altogether, IPART, Australian Water Association, Sydney Water and UTS Institute for Sustainable Futures
  • Networking sessions with Australian Partners

As part of this capacity development program, participants are completing return-to-work group projects.  Project topics range from decentralised water supply system design to institutional reform for wastewater service provision.  The IWC team will be travelling to Indonesia in the coming months as part of a follow-up meeting with participants to hear about the status of their projects, and provide ongoing support for participants.  Stay tuned for more updates!