Solutions for water challenges worldwide

Given the vital importance of water, finding solutions for the huge worldwide water-related challenges is absolutely fundamental. Take for instance the growing global scarcity of freshwater, the impact of climate change, the pressure on natural resources and – on the health side – the increasing occurrence of antimicrobial resistance. In this context, the World Economic Forum justifiably considers the ‘water crisis’ to be one of the top three risks facing us in the years ahead.

The development of innovative technologies and concepts is a key part of addressing these water challenges. Once developed, any solution then needs to be framed in the proper socio-economic context.

Allied Waters is based on a new, hybrid R&D business model. A model that connects research and business at almost every stage of the innovation process. Allied Waters focuses on conceptual innovations in the urban watercycle, and targets R&D that has reached Technology Readiness Levels of 7 and above typically. R&D at this level of maturity relies on pilots, demonstrations and ambitious, attractive public ‘launching customers’.

Towards the circular economy

The circular economy is the alternative to the current – essentially linear – economy. While the linear economy is based on the ‘take, make, dispose’ approach to materials and energy, the circular economy is founded on the principle of ‘circular by design’. Products and processes are designed with their maximum reuse in mind. ‘From use to reuse’: that’s the essence of this paradigm change. But the idea not only refers to closing the loop for materials, energy and water, it also concerns the circular economy’s organisation and its embedding in the socio-economic system. For more background information, visit and

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SOURCE: Ellen MacArthur Foundation circular economy team

Driving the circular economy

What do Allied Waters and the circular economy have in common? Water is of course crucial: among other things, it is essential for life, it defines our living space and is critical for our economy. When it comes to the watercycle, Allied Waters stands for the creation of innovative, sustainable water solutions through public-private partnerships. Our mission thus dovetails perfectly with the concept of a circular economy. It is no surprise that Allied Waters is happy to accept the challenge of becoming one of the driving forces behind a circular economy!

About us

The Collab is the main work unit in the Allied Waters model, which is based on partnerships between commercial enterprises, research centers and optionally end-users. The Collab is the heart of this knowledge management system: a unique combination of expert knowledge, practical experience and research, advice and engineering capabilities. All activities are coordinated by Allied Waters B.V. Our shareholders are KWH Water B.V. (60 %) and the Allied Waters Foundation (40 %).


Jos Boere, Director
Jos Boere (1959) is the Director of Allied Waters B.V. and Jos is also Deputy Director of KWR, where, until April 2017, he headed the Water Systems and Technology group. An underlying theme of his work over the years has been ‘bridging science to practice’ with regard to environmental issues, energy and technology/engineering. Previously, Jos Boere was business manager and head of R&D at Norit, a multinational company in the field of activated carbon technology. Jos holds a Master’s degree in Environmental Technology from Wageningen University (1984), and also has extensive professional experience in product, business and financial management.


The Allied Waters Foundation holds a 40 % share in Allied Waters B.V. Sustainability objectives constitute an integral part of the foundation’s statutes. The board members represent four societal segments: the public sector, the business world, knowledge institutions and institutional investors. The current board members are:

Michiel van Haersma Buma (chair)
Michiel van Haersma Buma (1951) worked at Utrecht University from 1976 to 1986. Between 1986 and 1996 he was Mayor of the town of Markelo, and in 1996 became Mayor of Voorburg. Following the merger of Voorburg with Leidschendam, he became Mayor of Leidschendam-Voorburg. Between 2007 and 2018 Michiel van Haersma Buma has been Dike Reeve of the Delfland Water Authority. Further he is member of the Supervisory Board of Lucas Onderwijsgroep, chair of the Financial Relations Council, member of the Council for Public Administration, chair of Delft Blue Technology and chair of TAHMO (Trans-African HydroMeteorological Observatory).

Idsart Dijkstra (secretary and treasurer)
Idsart Dijkstra (1967) is head of the Water Systems and Technology group at KWR and member of the Management Team. This research group encompasses the activities of 75 specialists in five research teams, including hydrological engineering, water distribution, water treatment and resource recovery. For a major part of his professional career Idsart worked at the Dutch drinking Water Company Vitens, including a 3 years assignment at Vitens-Evides International in the position of Project Director. He holds a master’s degree in Civil Engineering (1992) with a specialization in Sanitary Engineering from Delft University of Technology and a MBA (2008) from Rotterdam School of Management (Erasmus University).

Piet Klop
Piet Klop leads PGGM’s company and market engagement efforts in the field of water scarcity. He is also working on ESG integration in listed equity and in strategic asset allocation, and on the development of PGGM’s ‘investing in solutions’ portfolios. Before joining PGGM Investments in July 2011, Piet Klop held senior positions at the World Resources Institute in Washington DC, at the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and in the private sector. He also worked as a water resources expert at the World Bank and United Nations. Piet Klop holds Master’s degrees in Water Resources Management (Wageningen University, 1989) and Applied Environmental Economics (University of London, 1999), as well as certificates on Valuation and Integrated Risk Management (New York University, 2010) and Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility (Harvard Business School, 2010).

Driving the circular economy
KWR - Allied Waters

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