Achieving wider uptake of water-smart solutions


WIDER-UPTAKE is an international cooperation between 18 partners focusing innovative circular economy solutions co-developed by water utilities and private businesses from industry sectors starting from May 2020 until April 2024.

The project is financed by the European union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme under Grant agreement No. 869283

Aim & Objectives

WIDER UPTAKE aims to facilitate industrial symbiosis as a means to increase resource efficiency, limit emissions and develop sustainable business based on water-smart solutions.

The project is built around a set of innovative circular economy solutions co-developed by water utilities and private businesses from industry sectors with high water consumption, high use of material resources and energy – agriculture industry, building & manufacturing materials industry and energy supply.

The overall objective of WIDER UPTAKE is to facilitate industrial symbiosis by co-development of a roadmap towards wider uptake of water-smart solutions for wastewater reuse and resource recovery.

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This will be based on the principles of circular economy (CE) and be achieved through the following specific objectives:

  • Demonstrate innovative technical solutions that optimize water reuse, resource recovery and energy utilisation in selected industry settings by:

  1. Running five demonstration case studies on innovative symbiotic solutions for wastewater reuse and resource recovery. This objective will be achieved through work package 1 (WP 1).

  2. Developing and applying monitoring and control schemes to adequately manage the health and quality risks associated with reuse of treated wastewater and recovered resources (WP 2).

  3. Optimisation of the value chains to quantify the improved resource efficiency and economic benefits, also with respect to future applications (WP 3).

  • Facilitate wider uptake of water-smart solutions through:

  1. Governance assessment, design of innovative business models and identification of transition paths for industry - utility symbioses (WP 4).

  2. Evaluate water smartness and sustainability of the symbiotic CE solutions (WP 5).

  3. Network development and stakeholder dialogue around the key findings and their implications, including the establishment of a roadmap for implementation of water-smart solutions in an open access Virtual Learning and Sharing Centre (WP 6 and WP 7).


  • Significantly reduced use of water from freshwater sources

  • Improved recovery and use of resources including energy

  • Amount of water-related investments mobilised

  • New value chains with new businesses related to sustainable urban water management can grow when national regulations include reuse of wastewater for urban irrigation

  • Strengthening the competitiveness and growth of companies

Innovation system

Through integration and improvement of latest water-related technologies and provision of tools for their effective application in the areas pursued by the European Innovation Partnership Water, WIDER UPTAKE will not only generate the necessary momentum for growth of various companies, but also ensure a more interdisciplinary approach to the market.

The WIDER UPTAKE project also builds the capacity both of technology developers and userst.

Partners & Stakeholders

SINTEF and NTNU in Norway, TU Delft in the Netherlands, Czech Technical University and The University of Chemistry and Technology Prague in the Czech Republic, Università degli studi di Palermo in Italy and CSIR in Ghana will bring together 5 water utilities, 6 solution providers (5 SMEs and one publicly owned company) and ten (10) committed stakeholders representing different industry sectors and authorities in a north – south axis of five cases that span different governance contexts, socio-economic conditions, availability of water resources, climate and environmental conditions, and scale.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 869283