There are five key areas that Ofwat has identified that are big challenges for the sector, which would benefit from additional innovation, expressed in the five strategic innovation themes. Through the competitions, the Innovation Fund will support initiatives that can deliver significant value for customers, society and the environment aligned with one or more of these themes:
- Responding and adapting to climate change, including how to meet the sector’s ambition of net-zero emissions.
- Restoring and improving the ecological status of our water environments, protecting current and future customers from the impacts of extreme weather and pollution.
- Understanding long-term operational resilience and infrastructure risks to customers and the environment, finding solutions to mitigate these in sustainable and efficient ways.
- Testing new ways of conducting core activities to deliver wider public value.
- Exploring the opportunities associated with open data, stimulating innovation and collaboration, for example, encouraging new business models and service offerings that benefit customers, including those in vulnerable circumstances.