European research

Horizon 2020 - Horizon Europe - Other European projects

KWR’s participation in Horizon 2020 and other European research projects underlines the importance that we, as an applied research institute, attach to the interaction between the public and private sectors at an international level. Together with leading European knowledge institutions, water utilities, industry and technology providers we contribute to solutions for societal challenges. Among our areas of focus are health, safety, infrastructure, climate change and the circular economy. In the area of scientific innovation, we pursue international collaborations with universities.

Horizon 2020: European research and innovation programme

Horizon 2020 is a large European research and innovation programme aimed at strengthening European competitiveness. In consultation with the public and private sectors, KWR works within Horizon 2020 on solutions for societal challenges and scientific innovation. For water utilities and other end-users participation in the European programme’s projects means that they gain a European perspective on innovation.

The European research and innovation programme, Horizon 2020 (2014-2020), has an €80 billion budget to stimulate contributions towards solving societal challenges and scientific innovation. The objective is to strengthen Europe’s competitiveness by developing innovation and industry.

European Horizon 2020 Projects

We are actively involved in the following European Horizon 2020 research projects:

  • AQUARIUS (2017-2020): Proposing disruptive improvements in laser based water sensing.
  • AQUASPICE (2020-2024): Advancing Sustainability of Process Industries through Digital and Circular Water Use Innovations
  • B-Watersmart (2020-2024): Accelerate the transformation to a water-smart economy and society in European coastal regions, building on the vision of Water Europe.
  • Fiware4Water (2019-2022): Creating the ecosystem for next generation of internet services linked to smart city initiatives.
  • NextGen (2018-2022): Towards the next generation of water systems and services for the circular economy. (KWR is coordinating this project)
  • PATHOCERT (2020-2023): Strengthen the coordination capability of the first responders in handling waterborne pathogen contamination events.
  • STOP-IT (2017-2021): Physical and cyber protection of critical water infrastructures.
  • ULTIMATE (2020-2024): ULTIMATE is a project on water smart industrial symbiosis, and demonstrates, at 9 large scale sites across Europe, enabling technologies. (KWR is coordinating this project)
  • WATERMINING (2020-2024): Next generation water-smart management systems

Other European projects

And also in the following other European funded projects:

  • EUSEME (2019-2021): Development of new approaches to monitor emerging drug problems in Europe through wastewater-based epidemiology. (KWR is coordinating this project)
  • HEATSTORE (2018-2021): Underground Thermal Energy Storage facilitates the low-carbon transition of the heating and cooling sector.
  • REWATCH (2016-2020): Water reuse in the petrochemical industry.
  • SPECTORS (2016-2020): Unlock the market potential of civilian drone technology through sensor innovations for remote sensing and remote monitoring.

Completed projects

These EU research projects, that we actively participated in, have been finished:

  • ANSWER (2015-2019): Research into the transmission of antibiotics and antibiotic resistance in wastewater to humans and the environment via the soil, water and crop.
  • Bingo (2015-2019): Reduce the uncertainty of climate predictions at the local and regional level, and develop appropriate response strategies.
  • Bluecities (2015-2017): Generate recommendations on how water and waste can also be integrated, so as to make the Smart City policy even smarter.
  • Sim4Nexus (2016-2020): A project that investigated bio-physical and policy interlinkages across the five Nexus domains.
  • SUBSOL (2015-2018): targets a market breakthrough of SWS as robust answers to freshwater resource challenges in coastal areas. (KWR coordinated this project)
  • POWER (2015-2019): Integrated approach to urban water management through a combination of social, technological and political innovation.
  • Wat-Qual (2018-2019): Water quality in drinking water distribution systems.

European perspective on water sector challenges

For water utilities the participation in European projects means that they get close to the sources of innovative knowledge and expertise. They strengthen their network at the European level and learn from each other’s solutions, which provides them with a broader perspective on the challenges the water sector is addressing. This strengthens the operational effectiveness of the water utilities and other end-users.

The successor to Horizon 2020: Horizon Europe

The Horizon Europe research programme is the successor of H2020. Horizon Europe aspires to a mission-driven approach with clearly defined objectives. KWR is proud to have received grants for the Water-Futures project (2021-2027). The Water-Futures project’s ambition is to develop a framework for decisions making about water infrastructure systems.  The aim is to assure that these systems become more socially equitable, economically efficient and environmentally resilient, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations Agenda 2030.