IDA’s 2019 World Congress: Forging New Crossroads to Sustainability

IDA’s 2019 World Congress: Forging New Crossroads to Sustainability

For the past forty years, the International Desalination Association’s World Congress has specialized in showcasing cutting-edge technical papers on water treatment solutions. But this year, the Congress is exploring new pathways.

IDA’s World Congress is widely recognized as the premier event on advanced water treatment solutions, specifically desalination and water reuse. One of the industry’s signature events, the World Congress began in 1985 in Bermuda. Since then, the Congress has taken place consistently every other year, allowing IDA to enact its mission of connecting people and ideas to water solutions. This year, the Congress will take place in Dubai hosted by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority.

But the world has changed since 1985, and the water reuse industry is changing with it. We live at a time when experts predict that seawater desalination will actively grow at the highest rate since the late 2000s. Since 2010, the global contracted reuse capacity has almost doubled (from 59.7 million m3/d in 2009 to 118 million m3/d in 2017). Sustainable, financially viable water solutions are now more needed than ever, and organizations involved in desalination must quickly adapt to this rapid growth in their field.

According to IDA Secretary General, Shannon McCarthy, the 2019 World Congress will do just that. Held in the Dubai World Trade Center, “The IDA World Congress, generously hosted by DEWA, provides an ideal opportunity to take advantage of the forecasted growth… We’ve designed this event as a venue not only to gain knowledge, but also to exchange perspectives, network, and make valuable connections, with several new features that encourage dialogue and interaction.”

These new features include a two-day Leaders Summit and a series of IDA-Affiliate Majlis Forums. Running parallel to the Technical Program, the Leaders Summit provides a platform for some of the world’s foremost individuals across industries to interact, exchange perspectives, and engage in much-needed dialogue about the issues facing the globe today. The Summit opens with a Leaders with Community session, to which all conference delegates are welcome to attend, and the Summit concludes with a Leaders with Leaders session, an invite-only exclusive program for executives and industry leaders.

The IDA-Affiliate Majlis Forums will take place throughout the Congress and are open to all registered delegates. Inspired by the Middle-Eastern concept of “majlis”—or literally, “a place to sit and discuss”—these forums will give IDA’s affiliates an opportunity to trade insights and developments from the water sector in their home regions. These forums are meant to forge new relationships in the industry. Affiliates are asked to showcase innovative projects, policies and technologies that have produced positive results in their region, so that by the end of the Forums, attendees will have a comprehensive picture of where the water industry is today.

The World Congress also promises ample time to network with colleagues. The event’s kick-off activity is “Crossroads to the Greens,” a Corporate Golf Day on the championship Majlis course at the world-famous Emirates Golf Club. And the Congress itself is hosted by the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority at the Dubai World Trade Center.

Appropriately enough, IDA’s 2019 World Congress is named “Crossroads to Sustainability.” The introduction of the Leaders Summit and IDA-Affiliate Forums, combined with the Technical Program, Exhibition Hall, and thousand delegate attendees, highlight the increasing need for a cooperative and interdisciplinary approach to sustainable water practices—an approach that will make the industry more connected and more successful than ever before.

For more information about the 2019 World Congress and to register, visit To reserve space in the exhibition, email [email protected] and to learn more about “Crossroads to the Greens,” as well as sponsorship packages, contact [email protected].