The Future of Water UK TimelineNov062017
Category: Outreach

The Future of Water UK Timeline

By: Richard Watson, Anna Cupani

Why a future timeline for water?

Water is a precious resource, essential for life on our planet. It is such a fundamental part of our lives that we take for granted that it will always be there when we need it - certainly in a country like the UK.

The relationship that we as individuals have with water will almost certainly change in the years to come. This change will be driven by new technological advancements, such as new purification techniques that will allow us to recycle wastewater or new devices that will monitor our water consumption and make it more efficient. They will also be influenced by political choices and societal changes driven by smaller households, an aging population and a growing awareness around environmental issues.

In our foresight study, we looked at how technology, society, the environment, the economy and new policies will shape the future of water consumption. We identified several factors and organized them in different 'streams' that moving from the present situation imagine a probable future and, further in time, a possible one. 

Thanks to the expertise of dr. Ana Mijic from the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and dr. Chris Mazur, at Chemical Engineering, we were able to discuss the likelihood of these possible scenarios and to assess whether they are indeed probable or at least non-impossible. 

The results of this workshop are collected and graphically showcased in a map that reflects, as circles in water, possible future scenarios moving from a crowded present, into both positive and slightly more worrying futures.



The Future of Water Timeline was conceived and created by Richard Watson (Now and Next), Anna Cupani (Tech Foresight Research Manager), and our business partners working in the water sector. with academic input and feedback from Ana Mijic (Civil and Environmental Engineering) and Christoph Mazur (Chemical Engineering) and powered by Imperial Business Partners.


Imperial Tech Foresight brings the rigour of academic research to corporate partners, helping them to shape the future of their business.