Jointly meeting global challenges Annual report 2012


KWR and IWA to research the worldwide network of water professionals

6 June 2012Networks

KWR and the International Water Association (IWA) come to an agreement to together undertake research into the worldwide network of IWA. Water professionals from a range of different subject disciplines, organizations and national cultures operate within this knowledge network that encompasses the entire water cycle. The objective of the research is to improve the insight into how these professionals collaborate within IWA. Based thereon, both parties can jointly identify the collaboration challenges this network faces and how these can be dealt with in the future.

KWR and IWA share the ambition to bridge science to practice. The global network of IWA in the field of the water cycle alone has more than 50 Specialist Groups with members from around 130 countries coming from universities and research institutes, government bodies, utilities and industry. All these members represent organizations, visit events and exchange knowledge. KWR and IWA are starting a joint research project to obtain a detailed picture of the functioning and the role of this unique network. “The goal is a better understanding of how knowledge is created, exchanged and used”, says Paul Reiter, CEO of IWA. “Ultimately we want the whole water enterprise to be more successful in the world. KWR’s own large network and knowledge makes the institute an excellent partner for this research.”

Anchoring of knowledge management

The research – that will consist of a social network analysis, surveys and interviews – will provide both quantitative and qualitative data. For instance, the way in which IWA is institutionalized in the scientific domain – to what extent are IWA members represented in the important scientific research themes – has already been investigated. According to Mariëlle van der Zouwen, researcher into knowledge networks and governance for KWR, there is considerable overlap between the specializations of the members and important research themes. KWR has also started to study the scientific journals published by IWA. These also make an important and quantifiable contribution in the absolute sense to science. The joint research to be carried out by both organizastions will result in knowledge management being anchored even more firmly within IWA and the water sector.

© 2018 KWR Watercycle Research Institute

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