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What's happening at Ozwater'24 for Young Water Professionals?

Ozwater'24 has returned with over 100 Young Water Professionals eagerly attending the YWP program day on Monday 29 April.

The key theme of the conference is Accelerating Action, addressing the vital role water must play in the climate crisis of our current time. With multiple concurrent streams and more than 200 presentations covering all facets of the water industry, Australia’s premier water conference, Ozwater, is not to be missed.

Here's the highlights from today

YWP Program Highlights

Opening Session: Australian Young Water Professional of the Year 2023, Chelsea Hayward, showcased true leadership for the day, beginning with her water story, what inspired her to initiate a water career, and outlining her hopes to accelerate action.

Communicating Climate Change: In this collaborative workshop, delegates heard from experienced climate change and communication/engagement subject matter experts. With plenty of opportunities for creativity and out-of-the-box thinking, this workshop helped delegates to further develop key skills in communication on an issue that will be a factor for the water industry to face for generations to come.

Two Way Knowledge Exchanges to Regenerate Our Future: Facilitated by Prof. Phil Duncan and Prof. Emeritus Cynthia Mitchell AO, this session encouraged Young Professionals to examine their knowledge, attitudes, behaviours, and actions concerning our current state and the future we want, in terms of Australia’s First Peoples and our country more broadly. 

Site Tours: Delegates also attended site tour visits held in the afternoon which rounded out the discussions and learnings already undertaken throughout the day. 

What sessions should I attend as a Young Water Professional?

We recommend attending a variety of different sessions to immerse yourself into the many pathways a water career can take you. Here are our suggested sessions for each day below.

Day 1

  • 8:30am - 9:45am - Keynotes Gina Chick and Corey Tutt who will speak under the theme "Collaboration - The key to unlocking and accelerating our sectors potential"
  • 10:35am - 10:45am - Collaboration for success: Collaborative partnerships delivering exceptional infrastructure and community outcomes, Lisa Fragomeni, Yarra Valley Water 
  • 10:35am - 12:00pm - Responding when Water Gets Nasty - Floods, fires and high flows - enhancing our sectors capacity for response 
  • 1:10pm - 2:25pm - Student Water Prize, hear from our five Student Water Prize finalists as they deliver short and succinct presentations on everything from Biochar production to maximising bioenergy recovery
  • 2:35pm - 3:00pm - Working in partnership with remote Indigenous Communities, Tim Pitcher, Veolia
  • 3:50pm - 5:20pm - Water Blockchain Workshop

Day 2

  • 8:30am - 9:45am - Keynote Stephen Yarwood who will speak under the theme "How we can Equip our sector to Accelerate Action"
  • 10:35am - 12:00pm - Water Services Association of Australia stream, 'The decade that matters, Investment, climate, technology'
  • 1:10pm - 3:00pm - International Development Stream - Insights from utility partnerships across Southeast Asia and the Pacific.
  • 3:50pm - 5:20pm - Advancing First Nations procurement through the 3C's of supplier diversity, Arup and iDiC


Day 3

  • 9:00am - 10:30am - Keynote speakers Sam Bloom and Kala Vairavamoorthy who will speak under the theme "Inspiring and Empowering our people."
  • 10:15am - 12:40pm - Neurodiversity in the Water Sector Workshop - Unlocking hidden talent: leveraging neurodivergent strengths
  • 2:00pm - 3:25pm - Traditional Owners Workshop - Reflections on government water policy, efficacy and what's next
  • 3:50pm - 4:30pm - Closing Networking Drinks

Why should Young Water Professionals attend?

Professional Development: Ozwater is designed to enhance understanding of how to integrate passion for water and sustainability into action and plans for our water future. It's an opportunity to learn from influential minds and develop skills in interactive sessions.

Networking: Building connections with peers will benefit you personally and professionally, opening up new career paths and connections for future collaboration.

Knowledge Transfer: Attending the program allows YWPs to bring back valuable insights and ideas to their organisation, contributing to business development and innovation.

Why should employers encourage their Young Water Professionals to attend?

Investing in Talent: Sending young employees to the conference demonstrates a commitment to their professional growth, positioning your organisation as an "Employer of Choice".

Business Development: Participants will gain exposure to the latest insights and opportunities, which can translate into competitive advantages for your company.

Innovation and Sustainability: By engaging with the program's focus on accelerating action for water sustainability, young professionals can contribute to your organisation's sustainability goals and initiatives.

Haven't register yet?

Registration is open at

We’ve developed a how-to guide to help you convey the direct benefits to your employer. Download and read the pack and adjust it to suit your needs. 

Take the first step towards accelerating your career and contributing to the future of water management.

Thank you to our Young Water Professionals Program Supporter Beca HunterH2O