Plenary speakers


Prof. Zhiguo Yuan

City University of Hong Kong (China)

Exploring New Opportunities for Resource Recovery and Reuse in Wastewater Management

Short bio

Prof Zhiguo Yuan AM is currently Chair Professor of Urban Water Management at School of Energy and Environment, City University of Hong Kong. Prior to this, he was the Director of the Australian Centre for Water and Environmental Biotechnology at The University of Queensland. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE) and an IWA Distinguished Fellow. He was named as one of Engineers Australia’s Top 100 Most Influential Engineers for 2015, and appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 2019. He is a Clarivate Highly-Cited Researcher, and Editor-in-Chief of Water Research X.

His research focuses on the development of innovative solutions for urban water management through effective integration of fundamental science and applied engineering. His research areas include corrosion and odour management in sewers, resource recovery from wastewater and integrated urban water management. He published over 500 fully refereed journal papers including papers in Nature and Science, and attracted nearly 44,000 citations, giving an H-index of 116 (GS, May 2023). He is the founder of three biotechnology businesses namely SeweX, Cloevis and Lodomat. His research achievements and leadership have been recognized through national and international awards including the 2015 ATSE Clunies Ross Award and the International Water Association (IWA) 2014 Global Project Innovation Award.


Eva Martinez Diaz

Isle Utilities (united Kingdom)

Navigating towards an innovative and sustainable water industry

Short bio

Eva Martinez Diaz- Isle Utilities

Eva has more than 15 solid years of professional experience as leader in strategy development, innovation, leading and conducting business with public and private entities in the field of water management, water processes, environment and sustainability first in Germany and later in Spain.

She works as an expert for evaluation of R&D projects for the European Commission, leads the Action group of Business models of the ICT4water cluster in Europe and belongs to several expert councils on the subject of digital transformation in water (Smart Water Network Forum (SWAN) and Aquatech).

Speaker at various water congresses (eg: keynote at International Young Water Conference 2019, keynote at the International Water Association (IWA) LET 2016, speaker at the Water business forum at Dubai2020, participant at SWAN 2020 and 2019, EIP Water 2017, IWA Ideas 2018 …).

She studied Agricultural Engineering at the Polytechnic University of Valencia.  She holds a BSc (Hons) in Environmental Sciences at Coventry University and MSc in Integrated Environmental Management at Nottingham Trent University.


Gustaf Olsson

Lund University (Sweden)

Water - key indicator of global warming and basis for energy and food production

Short bio

Gustaf Olsson is professor in Industrial automation and since 2006 professor emeritus at Lund University, Sweden. His has devoted his research to control and automation of urban water systems, power production, electrical power systems and industrial processes. Since his retirement, he has focused on interactions between water, energy, climate change, food, economy and lifestyle.

For more than a decade he has served as part time guest professor at Tsinghua University, Beijing and at the Technical University of Malaysia (UTM). He has been the editor-in-chief of Water Science and Technology and an IWA Board member. He has received the IWA Publication Award, an Honorary Membership of IWA, and an Honorary Doctor degree at UTM. He is an IWA Distinguished Fellow.

Gustaf has authored 14 books (some of them translated into Russian, German, Korean, Persian, and Chinese), chapters in 22 books, and 200+ scientific papers.  Four books are now open access. His latest book “Water Interactions - a systemic view. Why we need to comprehend the water - climate - energy – food – economy – lifestyle nexus” was published in 2022.


Krishna Pagilla

Ralph and Rose Hoeper Engineering Professor
Foundation Professor
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Chair
Nevada Water Innovation Institute Director
(United States)

Drivers and Strategies of Wastewater Reclamation for Potable Reuse

Short bio

Dr. Krishna Pagilla is the Ralph E. and Rose A. Hoeper Engineering Professor, Foundation Professor, and Chair of Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Nevada, Reno. Prof. Pagilla is also the Director of Nevada Water Innovation Institute, a university-utility collaboration to drive leading edge research and innovation in the water sector. Prof. Pagilla’s expertise is in water quality, water resource recovery, indirect potable water reuse, and environmental biotechnology. His research group currently focuses on water reclamation for indirect potable reuse through ozone-biologically active carbon filtration-based treatment systems, nutrient control and recovery in water reclamation, emerging contaminants and pathogens in water, and wastewater-based epidemiology.

He has published 125 peer-reviewed journal papers and over 100 other publications in various aspects of water engineering and science. Dr. Pagilla received numerous awards from national and international organizations, and is a Fellow of Water Environment Federation (WEF), International Water Association, and the American Society of Civil Engineers. Dr. Pagilla received the Engelbrecht International Service Award (2021), McKee Groundwater Protection, Restoration, or Sustainable Use Award (2020), Thomas R. Camp Applied Research Award (2013), and Fair Distinguished Engineering Educator Award (2013), and Harrison Prescott Eddy Medal for Outstanding Applied Research on Wastewater Principles and Processes (2011). Dr. Pagilla held numerous leadership positions in the water profession. He served as Chair of the USA National Committee of IWA (2016-19), as an International Juror for the Stockholm Junior Water Prize Competition (2015-22), and currently as a member of the USEPA Science Advisory Board. Dr. Pagilla hosted the IWA Leading Edge Conference on Water and Wastewater Technologies in Reno-Sparks, Nevada in March-April, 2022 as its Organizing Committee Chair.

Dr. Pagilla holds a PhD degree in Civil/Environmental Engineering from the University of California (Berkeley, CA) and MS and BE degrees in Civil/Environmental Engineering.

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