Northumbrian Water’s Innovation Festival is going DOWN UNDER for 2021.

A parallel version of the water company’s flagship innovation event is set to take place on the other side of the globe for the very first time, thanks to a new partnership with Sydney Water. 


After taking part in last year’s successful event, which was ran all-digitally due to COVID-19, the team at Sydney Water were inspired to create their own spin-off event.


The Sydney Water Innovation Festival event will run simultaneously to the original Northumbrian event – kicking off between October 18-21. 


It will gather hundreds of innovators to the heritage-listed Customs House near the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge – the traditional entry point for people, culture, and ideas since 1845. Participants will take part in a series of sprints, hacks and dashes in a similar format to the Innovation Festivals held in Newcastle. 


Teams in Australia will be looking to come up with innovative solutions to securing resilient water in one of the driest countries on Earth and will be working along with innovators in England, around the clock, to find solutions to shared common problems such as water poverty and sustainability.


The theme for the world-wide festival is “The Brilliant Get-Together” - which is a nod to the collaborative partnership approach to this year’s event. In total, previous festivals have seen more than 9353 people from 2284 companies and 37 countries come together for the event.


Northumbrian Water’s Innovation Festival will run from October 18-21, with Sydney Water’s event running in parallel from October 18-20. 


Angela MacOscar, Head of Innovation at Northumbrian Water, added: “Innovation Festival fever has quite literally spread across the globe, which is something we would never have imagined in our wildest dreams when we started running these events in 2017. 


“Innovation is so important, especially now, and brings people together from across the world. 


“We’re so proud that our festival is helping to make these connections and it’s a real honour that Sydney Water not only came to our digital festival last year, but enjoyed it so much that they wanted to replicate it. We are so happy to link up and work with them on making this happen.


“Last year, as we were forced to go digital because of COVID-19, we saw the festival truly go global with 37 different countries joining us, but this year will be on another level thanks to the Australian team.


“The opportunities really are limitless.”


Nicola Nelson, Sydney Water’s Manager of Research and Innovation said Sydney was brimming with energy for the festival.


“We’re absolutely delighted to be working with Northumbrian Water – they’re global leaders in innovation, and we’re excited to be partnering to make the Brilliant Get-Together a truly worldwide event,” Dr Nelson said.


“Innovation is key to Sydney Water delivering world-class water services. We’re constantly exploring innovative solutions and opportunities to make sure we’re prepared and ready for whatever tomorrow brings.”


To register to take part in Northumbrian Water’s Innovation Festival visit -