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TaKaDu at the OECD’s Eco-Innovation workshop


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The OECD and the European Commission held a fascinating workshop earlier this year in Copenhagen entitled “The future of Eco-Innovation: The role of business models in green transformation”, and I was fortunate enough to be invited to speak there. A handful of representatives from some truly amazing companies, myself included, were asked to help the workshop experts “showcase good practices of radical and systemic eco-innovations”. What a great validation for our belief in TaKaDu’s potential to transform the water industry!
It’s not an easy subject for idealists, policy-makers, academics, and people from industry – all present at the workshop – to discuss, though. Whatever their beliefs and private motivations, business leaders need to build viable businesses, where “green” technology can only triumph if it promotes great tangible value. This can typically be through marketing and public perception, concrete cost savings, or regulatory compliance. Yet on a national or global level, innovation for sustainability is often recognised as a goal in its own right. Can the two paradigms be brought together, and not just at the superficial “greenwashing” of entrenched industrial methods? Are big government grants for R&D consortia the best way to encourage this – vying with business investors to steer the industry, or should policy-makers wield their power in more unique ways?
For the case study of TaKaDu, I tried to explain what makes our technology, business, and industry so special, and how they are inextricably linked. Building on that, I shared some views on where government or international economic policy (the OECD’s main interests) can encourage and shape ecologically beneficial innovation. This, we hope, can harness and reinforce the entrepreneurial spirit and innovative capacity of business and technology innovators towards globally beneficial goals.

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TaKaDu at the OECD’s Eco-Innovation workshop

  1. 1. monitoring water networksOverview for OECD Eco-Innovation Workshop Haggai Scolnicov, Chief Technology Officer January 2012 monitoring water networks
  2. 2. a smarter way to manage water networksmonitoring water networks
  3. 3. 50% of the world’s waterpipes are over 80 years old 25% of the water is LOST through leaks, bursts and inefficienciesThe global water crisis… …is a water MANAGEMENT crisis monitoring water networks
  4. 4. TaKaDu monitors water networks for faultsPatented mathematical and statistical methods and algorithmsTaKaDu accurately detects, classifies, locates and reports onnetwork anomalies as they occurA wide range of interfaces allows delivering timely, actionableknowledge and insight to all levels in the utility monitoring water networks 4
  5. 5. From raw data to actionable knowledge Network Automatic Actionable Timely data monitoring alerts repairs Turning water network data into automated real-time alerts about faults, inefficiencies and water loss events (leaks and bursts) • Nothing to install – internet based and uses existing data • No capital expenditure – sold as service • No upfront costs – “plug and play” 5 monitoring water networks
  6. 6. User-Friendly Web-Interface 6 monitoring water networks
  7. 7. Inside the businessmonitoring water networks
  8. 8. Business interlinked with technology• An industry unused to Software-as-a-Service• SaaS a powerful paradigm for Data Analytics and for enterprises with complex processes (such as utilities)• Resisting the urge to charge performance-based (customers’ operations and business are far too complex)• What is the real value of water loss? (or other faults)• And who pays for it? Who recovers it? Who enforces?• A collaborative industry and green policies! monitoring water networks 8
  9. 9. What makes it a success?• Tech for existing pain, not tech in search of a problem• Strong IP and tangible value, not just “green marketing”• Brought powerful tools and knowhow to a new domain• Business model empowers research, product development, fast adoption, and rapid scaling• Work, work, and work• Bottom line: customers worldwide, partners, awards…• But still a long way to go! monitoring water networks 9
  10. 10. What next?• New markets (developing countries, smaller utilities, other network types…)• Many more customers – immediate potential is huge!• More comprehensive monitoring for water networks (more input data types, water quality, water treatment…)• Smart Water Networks – much bigger than TaKaDu monitoring water networks 10
  11. 11. Can policy help? Hinder?monitoring water networks
  12. 12. Money can’t buy me loveNew companies and new ideas often needmarket traction more than better funding sourcesGovernment can promote green innovation in waysother than funding companies• Leverage official contacts to open doors to business relations abroad (e.g. because utilities have strong government ties)• Facilitate creation of local test/pilot/beta sites• Trade shows, business tours, etc. with “stamp of approval”(All real examples from Israeli NewTech program) monitoring water networks 12
  13. 13. Money makes the world go roundImplementing innovation needs money;government can take risk for long-term value• Funding R&D consortia is not always helpful Defocus, strings attached, money without market validation…• Green regulation can create direct business value for green solutions E.g. make the cost of water loss more explicit, to create a market• What about funding the big customers (e.g. utilities) to invest in eco-innovative products and services? Need to consider reciprocity, balanced incentive, etc. monitoring water networks 13
  14. 14. Is there a (distinct) templatefor eco-innovation?• Different from other innovation? • Positive bias and more potential for policy support • Utilities slow to adopt? (Not necessarily) • Dominated by “traditional” domain technology (e.g. hydraulic solutions to water problems)• Build a solid business (and forget “green” for a moment) Sustainability may be another pillar, if someone is paying for it• Find the bigger picture and join with other players to address it together (cooperation, competition, coopetition…) monitoring water networks 14
  15. 15. Thank youmonitoring water networks