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Water Forum

Request an Invitation to join on October 23, 2023

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The inaugural VERGE 23 Water Forum is an invitation-only, half-day gathering of leaders — from businesses, governments, investors, NGOs, solution providers and startups — at the forefront of creating sustainable, resilient and equitable water systems. 

Solving wicked water problems is critical to economic development, business growth, social well-being and ecosystem health. We believe there are untapped private- and public-sector opportunities to solve these water challenges through new types of collaborations that accelerate technology and policy innovation. Together, we have the potential to solve water scarcity and poor quality, and ensure the availability of safe and affordable drinking water by all.

What's Covered

VERGE 23 Water Forum participants will share innovative approaches to corporate and public-sector water strategies, partnerships, funding and financing. They will be introduced to innovative technologies and services to achieve their global water commitments while ensuring beneficial outcomes for local communities and ecosystems. Participants will form collaborative relationships with peers and thought leaders by engaging in interactive problem-solving and networking sessions. The result will be a dynamic community working together to create a healthy economy and environment.


The forum will convene a curated group of about 100 leaders working to reform how we value and manage water. Roughly half will represent business: Fortune 1,000 companies from sectors such as food and beverage, agriculture, manufacturing, mining, semiconductor, retailers and power generation, along with global technology providers, startups and investors The balance will come from the public sector, water utilities, local, national and global nonprofits, academia and civil society.

Key Topics

  • Moving from individual action to catalytic communities accelerating solutions

  • Advancing innovative public policies and corporate strategies and governance 

  • Increasing funding and financing of public and private water infrastructure

  • Addressing water-land-energy nexus challenges

  • Restoring, building and nurturing healthy watersheds

will sarni

Water is essential for economic development, business growth, social well-being and ecosystem health. Now, more than ever, it’s time to create a 'catalytic community’ to address these intersecting priorities and ensure greater water security in communities around the globe. That’s why I am excited to be the keystone partner for the VERGE Water Forum — to help convene those committed to solving our most pressing water challenges and who bring a real bias for action.

Founder, CEO and General Manager
Water Foundry
Heather Clancy

When it comes to risks associated with a warming climate, water scarcity and quality concerns are among the most evident — and immediate — priorities to address. The solutions will require more than a surface-level commitment to rethinking water consumption and investments. They’ll require bold approaches made possible by nature and emerging digital technologies, and I’m excited to explore the possibilities at the VERGE Water Forum.

VP, Editor at Large
GreenBiz Group

Water Forum Schedule

Location: San Jose Marriott, SJ Ballroom Salons I-III

11:00 – 12:30: Registration

  • Prior to arrival, you will need to first pick up your VERGE 23 badge at the registration desk located in the Concourse room of the San Jose Convention Center (adjacent to the Marriott).

11:30 – 12:30: Lunch & Roundtable Discussions

  • Helping Companies Take the Next Step in Their Water Target-Setting Journey - Table Host: Allen Townsend, WFF
  • Water Resiliency Is Becoming Business Critical: Are Your Executives Ready? - Table Hosts: Jonathan Lanciani, Coho; Matt Haddon, ERM

12:30 – 1:40: Plenary

  • Welcome, Context Setting and Overview
  • Foundational Panel - Water, It's Complicated
  • Lightning Talks - Bold Ideas for Systemic Change

1:40 - 1:55: Networking Break - Sponsored by Great Lakes Protection Fund

1:55 - 2:25: Corporate Water Strategies and Targets

2:25 – 3:20: Breakout Group Activity

  • Water Stewardship in a Water-Stressed Region

3:20 - 3:50: Report Out

3:50 – 4:00: Reflection and Closing

4:00 – 6:00: Reception - Sponsored by Walton Family Foundation (Water Forum attendees, only)

  • Market Terrace, San Jose McEnery Convention Center


Request an Invitation

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