Sydney Water Innovation Festival

SWIF22 was a success

fter a successful debut in 2021, the Sydney Water Innovation Festival 2022 (SWIF22) made a triumphant return in November, bringing together leaders in industry, government and academia to connect, inspire, collaborate and innovate to solve some of the greatest challenges facing the water industry and broader society. 

The festival delivered impressive keynote speakers, including Stan Grant, Todd Sampson, and Naomi Simson, as well as thought-provoking panel sessions, fireside chats, ‘tech tanks’ and design sprints, all of which challenged and inspired audiences. 

To view the SWIF22 Outcomes Pack, click here. 

SWIF22 might be over, but the momentum from the festival is only just getting started.

Access to all available content from SWIF22, can be found in the SWIF22 tab below.

About the event

Sydney Water has been collaborating with Northumbrian Water Group since 2021, to bring the Innovation Festival to Australia and share ideas from around the globe.

Our motivation for the Sydney Water Innovation Festival (SWIF) is to encourage a culture of innovation and create a better life with world-class water services.

We want to empower our people and partners to move beyond their day jobs and take the opportunity to create fresh ideas and projects that will deliver value to our customers and the community.

The core themes include:
  1. Water security, resilience and environmental performance
  2. Liveability and sustainability
  3. Smart cities
  4. Circular economy
  5. Customer experience
  6. Diversity and inclusion

About SWIF22

We once again collaborated with Northumbrian Water Group to bring the Innovation Festival to Australia and share ideas from around the globe.

Spread across five action-packed days from 25 to 29 November 2022, SWIF22 focused on reconnecting people with urban waterways with the opening of swim sites as part of our Summer of Swimming in conjunction with the Urban Plunge initiative. 

Our Innovation Hub at the Australian National Maritime Museum played host to thought leadership keynote addresses and panel discussions, plus six Tech Tanks, which aim to fast-track the development of new and innovative ways to solve some of our greatest challenges.

We also showcased emerging innovations and technologies and some of our innovation success stories in the water industry, as well as the outcomes of the Design and Data Sprints.

The Splashes! great debate with the UK was also back, along with networking and engagement opportunities. 

We also had the privilege of hosting Brett Leavy, a Virtual Heritage Jedi and creator of Virtual Songlines, a virtual heritage toolkit for simulating, representing and promoting the cultural heritage of First Nations across Australia.


How did we go? 

  • 27 technology tank pitches  
  • 23 sessions  
  • 816 attendees  
  • 70+ speakers  
  • 70 design & data sprinters  
  • 500 hours streamed  
  • 281 organisations
  • 20 sponsors 
  • 151k social media impressions
  • 22 countries 


Urban Plunge Tech Summit 

Sydney Water’s first inaugural Tech Summit kicked off our Innovation Festival on the 25th of November, which was an industry-based event showcasing techniques and innovations that can make swimming and aquatic recreation in our waterways easier, cheaper and safer.  

To find out more about the event and what the next steps are for making our waterways swimmable, find out more here.

Live stream recordings

What it's about

SWIF22 launch and panel discussion

Why we need to work in networks. 

SWIF22 day 2

Opening & Acknowledgement of Country

SWIF22 Closing Ceremony

Closing Ceremony 


What it's about

Stan Grant

How cultural heritage can shape resilience.  

Shirley Chowdhary

Diversity, inclusion & Indigenous empowerment


Panel Discussions
What it's about

Achieving resilience in water supply

The Purified Recycling Water  success stories

CEO Session

Diversity, inclusion & indigenous empowerment

Future of Water

Professor Stuart Khan​ (UNSW) & St Aloysius Catholic Primary School, Cronulla

Panel Session

Planning for a circular economy


Tech Tanks  What it's about

Tech Tank 

Improving Trade Waste controls

Tech Tank 

New treatment technologies for emerging contaminants of concern for reuse

Tech Tank 

New treatment technologies for emerging contaminants on effluent discharge

Tech Tank

Smart Cities Enablement


The Splashes!

What it's about

The Splashes!

Urban swimming holes or British bathing, who does it better?

Thank you to our partners

The Sydney Water Innovation Festival would be nothing without its incredible sponsors. A huge thank you to the 16 sponsors that supported SWIF22. 

If you are interested in sponsoring future SWIF’s please get in touch with us at

With that, SWIF22 would like to leave you with our favourite quote of the festival from Sydney Water’s Managing Director, Roch Cheroux, “There is no innovation, without disobedience”.

Platinum partners

Gold partners

Silver partners

Bronze partners

Venue sponsor