Top 30 Finalists for Water Changemaker Innovation Awards announced

The Water Changemaker Innovation Awards 2023 is proud to announce the top 30 finalists selected from a pool of exceptionally innovative and impactful projects dedicated to addressing water-related challenges worldwide. The finalists have been announced during a hybrid event held on the sidelines of the ongoing United Nations General Assembly in New York on Friday, 22 September 2023.  

The top 30 finalists represent a diverse range of water-related initiatives ranging from clean water access, improving quality and efficiency and conservation efforts to cutting-edge technologies. These projects embody the spirit of innovation and dedication necessary to address the global water crisis.

“We are thrilled to announce the top 30 finalists of the Water Changemaker Innovation Awards 2023. Their exceptional dedication and innovative solutions are paving the way for a more sustainable and water-secure future,” said Jaehyang So, Chair of the GWP Technical Committee and Jury of the Water Changemaker Awards.

Jaehyang So, Chair of the GWP Technical Committee & Jury of the Water Changemaker Awards

“These finalists have demonstrated their commitment to making a meaningful impact to combat climate change, and we look forward to celebrating the three winners who will be announced during COP28 in Dubai in December. The Water Changemaker Awards is a global initiative that aims to recognize high-level commitment and leadership for climate-resilient water investments and showcase the most promising climate-resilient innovations with the greatest potential for scale, replication, and further investment to support a water-secure world. The competition is therefore recognizing and celebrating groundbreaking solutions that drive positive change in water,” she added.

The Water Changemaker Innovation Awards 2023 received a record number of submissions from individuals, organizations, and enterprises dedicated to advancing water sustainability. The judging panel had the arduous task of selecting the top 30 finalists from over 300 applications based on their potential for long-lasting impact, innovation, and scalability.

A 14-year-old applicant, Sawyer Anderson from North Dakota, USA received the Water Changemaker Awards Chairperson’s special recognition for innovation, diversity, and inclusion. Sawyer raises money through sales of her book, Water Works, and handmade African chitenge bags. She uses the proceeds to provide clean water in Zambia. 100% of Water Works profits are matched by Wellspring for the World and then triple-matched by World Vision. To date, she has raised $1.2 million and built 84 clean water wells.

Below are the Top 30 finalists and a brief about their innovations:

NoApplicantInnovation BriefCountry
1Aumsat Technologies LLP  The company’s AI and satellite-based hydro analytics solution not only detects and predicts water leakage at a substantially reduced cost but, by conserving significant water volumes, also aids in generating water credits. These credits quantify the tangible impact of water saved or Non-Revenue Water (NRW) reduced.India
2Bokju Co., Ltd.To prevent corrosion (rust) of stainless steel and strengthen the durability of polyethene, Bokju developed a new adhesive to bond the two materials, safely ensuring the hygiene of water. It also developed a waterproof panel product that responds to climate change by reducing carbon emissions.South Korea
3CAST CO., LTD.CAST provides eco-friendly ozone and radical sterilization solutions that only use air and oxygen to disinfect food and water. This innovative technology uses a low temperature microplasma technology which helps reduce carbon emissions. South Korea
4FAMS Design Solution Private LimitedThe company developed an innovation called “FAMS Intelligence” which is an indigenous open-source web GIS-based Decision Support portal for better management of water, climate, agriculture and energy related challenges. The platform provides interaction between forecasters and users to improve forecasts, from early warning to early action.  India
5Figad Multibusiness smc Limited (FMB LTD)  FMB’s innovation is a technology called Gulper; a sewage sludge pump that’s based on a simple low-cost water hand pump design. It helps improve sanitation in a country where 3.8 million people do not have a toilet, and over 23,000 Ugandans, 17,000 of whom are children under the age of 5, are dying due to poor sanitation.Uganda
6Hydrotec Solutions Private Limited The company has developed Water Kiosks that run entirely on solar power. It is a fully automatic system that can be controlled by a mobile app and offers safe, sustainable and affordable drinking water for rural communities. Further, the system has integrated water treatment technologies.  India
7Innovating Green Technology (IGT)IGT’s innovation provides safe and clean drinking water by treating the water with adequate systems and reusing RO reject water in fish farming powered by solar energy. These processes secure a suitable supply of safe drinking water while mitigating the effects of water scarcity on the environment and economy.Lebanon
8IstidamaIstidama’s WaterSec project provides a transformative solution for water-intensive industries. The innovation, WSSM, is an IoT sensor system utilizing image processing and artificial intelligence to provide real-time, machine-level water consumption data. It allows industries to identify inefficiencies, predict maintenance needs, optimize water usage, and prevent wastage.Tunisia
9JW ECO TECHNOLOGY CONSULTING (FUZHOU) CO., LTD.JW Eco-Technology offers a comprehensive solution focused on on-site water recycling to address too much, too little, and too dirty water. This is achieved through on-site infiltration to address excessive water, on-site storage to address water scarcity and on-site purification to address water pollution.China
10SOCIETE COOPERATIVE AGRICULTURE NOUVELLE GENERATIONThe intervention, AGRICULTURE INTEGREE, is an integrated farming system for producing cereals and fish on the same farm site. It allows producers to master sustainable water management in the face of climate change and to produce natural fertilizer from aquatic breeding droppings to enrich the soil.Côte d’Ivoire
11MC SKY’S FOOD PLANET NIG LTDThe company provides portable drinking water in sachets using Automated Variable Filtration(AVF) technology which helps deliver the highest quality water at substantially reduced costs for an average Nigerian(low-income-earners). The company also provides comprehensive home water treatment solutions.  Nigeria
12Nimble Vision LLCNimble Vision created Ni -The Water Saviour, an IoT platform that makes water infrastructure smart, affordable and scalable. It makes water tanks smart and acts as a conventional water level controller.India/USA
13NXTLVL WATER TECHNOLOGY INC  NXTLVL Water is helping solve the water scarcity challenge in the island and coastal communities in the Philippines, by using the most abundant water source; the sea.  It uses an off-grid (no electricity plug-in) renewable desalination solution; simple to install, typhoon and harsh weather resilient, and requires minimal maintenance.Philippines
14O2NB CO., LTDBy installing 1,000 tons/day equipment to remove fluoride contained in spring water and groundwater in the Arusha region of Tanzania, the company is helping 50,000 residents avoid diseases, establishing a sustainable system, educating villagers on technology, and contributing to the creation of a source of revenue.South Korea
15Ridge to ReefsThe innovation mimics natural processes of nitrification and denitrification (that occur in nature) using readily available materials (often from materials considered waste), to treat wastewater to a very high standard -exceeding drinking water standards. The system can be used after a septic system or after primary treatment in centralized wastewater applications.USA
16Ruden ASRuden’s innovation tackles a pressing problem exacerbated by climate change – water scarcity. Traditional hydrogeological methods have often left deep freshwater resources untapped as they only explore depths of around 300 meters. Ruden is able to access water reserves at depths exceeding 1000 meters, hence remains unaffected by drought conditions.   Norway
17Schrödinger TechnologieRienLight Version 2.0 project by Schrödinger Technologie provides a sustainable and reliable solution for accessing safe drinking water in rural communities and refugee camps, while simultaneously reducing carbon emissions and mitigating the effects of climate change. It utilizes solar power and an efficient purification process.Nigeria
18Sense it Out Intelligent Solutions Pvt LtdSICCA is utilizing IoT and specialized sensors to conserve up to 80% of water and enhance crop yields. It has also significantly helped reduce the time and effort farmers invest in their fields.India
19Blue Group SolutionsBlue Waters offers a cutting-edge water quality monitoring system that combines advanced hardware and software solutions. Its innovation centres around a comprehensive dashboard and sensor array designed for real-time monitoring of various water parameters. This includes water level, pH, dissolved oxygen, conductivity, temperature, and more.Botswana
20SSENGThe company’s innovation is around water treatment through a micro-fibre filtration system consisting of only 2 processes: coagulation and fibre filtration. The water treatment time is only about 3 minutes and is considered an efficient and sustainable water treatment method to reduce the impact of climate change and carbon emissions reduction.South Korea
21Tele-Bere Green AgroFarmsTele-Bere was birthed in August 2021 with its innovative solar-powered irrigation systems that take advantage of Ghana’s high levels of sunshine and provide clean energy for sustainable irrigation to smallholder forest and farm producers across the semi-arid northern savanna regions of Northern Ghana.Ghana
22Tergeo ABTerGeo is developing an innovative technology for producing freshwater on a large scale through desalination with a technology that requires low maintenance with only the use of local, renewable energy sources.   Water production is achieved through an innovative process for evaporation and desalination of seawater where a combination of solar-, tidal-, wave-, and wind energy are used.Sweden  
23The Virtual Irrigation AcademyFarmers need information about water in their soil and that is what the VIA provides with its user-friendly, colour-based tools. VIA developed a soil water sensor – buried in the ground and attached to a light – that shows blue when the plants have plenty of water, green when things are okay and red when plants need water.Australia
24Victoria Green FarmsThe company’s innovation, “HarvestHaven,” addresses the pressing challenge of climate-induced water scarcity and its cascading effects on agriculture, ecosystems, and communities. This innovative water harvesting system not only safeguards against droughts and erratic rainfall patterns but also promotes sustainable farming practices.Kenya
25Eco Panplas1 billion plastic bottles are discarded every year in Brazil. The lubricating oil contained in 1 discarded bottle is enough to contaminate 2 thousand litres of water. Eco Panplas has developed an innovative and efficient production system, which separates the oil from the ground plastic in an ecological way without using any water, without generating waste, and with a cost of 30% less than the water process.Brazil
26WI.PlatThe company’s innovation is an AI-driven leak detection system which fuses Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud technologies to capture on-site water leakage sounds in real-time. This pioneering setup enables swift validation by non-experts, transforming leak detection efficacy.South Korea
27Zim Earthworm Farms P/LThe company’s innovation aims to provide off-grid decentralised sewer reticulation using shallow septic tanks and install permanent solutions to manhole blockages. The solution also provides a septic tank sludge disposal and carbon and nutrient recovery park in Harare.Zimbabwe
28Blexce GlobalThe innovation, BLEXCE Water, harnesses renewable solar and wind energy to power the water production process. The system captures air, filters the air to remove impurities and extracts water content through condensation. The collected water then undergoes a rigorous triple filtration process and UV treatment, ensuring it meets the highest purity standards.Zambia
29INST DE CONSERV AMBIENTAL THE NATURE CONSERVANCY BRASIL & WATER FUND FOR LIMA AND CALLAO – AQUAFONDO  The Brazil & Peru Water Funds employ large-scale Nature-Based Solutions (NbS) and collaborations, conserving and restoring vital watersheds. This is done through the recovery of ancestral practices, technologies that are in harmony with the catchment, and modern engineering integration.Brazil  & Peru
30Source GlobalSOURCE Hydropanels are a solar-powered, infrastructure-free solution for clean drinking water powered by the combination of solar photovoltaics and high-efficiency solar thermal to transform air into pure water. SOURCE Hydropanel technology provides a climate-resilient water supply to marginalized communities having successfully installed Hydropanels and water projects in over 50 countries.  USA
The finalists will proceed to the next round of evaluations, where they will have the opportunity to showcase their initiatives in more detail and compete for a coveted spot among three winners. The top 30 finalists will attend a boot camp in November before winners are announced during COP28 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates in December.  
Speaking on behalf H.E Dr. Mokgweetsi Masisi, President of Botswana and Chair of the Awards, Botswana’s Minister of Communication, Knowledge and Technology Honourable Thulagano Merafe SEGOKGO congratulated the finalists.
“I send my heartfelt congratulations to the top 30 finalists. Your work is a beacon of hope, a testament to what we can achieve when we work together once the common goal, I also pass my heartfelt congratulations and gratitude to the high-level panel and the partners or ventures to support this. Thank you all for your dedication and I look forward to celebrating your achievements the upcoming awards ceremony,” he said during the launch of the High-Level Panel Campaign -Mind the Gap, Invest in Water on Tuesday 19th September.
The Water Changemaker Awards are convened by the Continental Africa Water Investment Programme, K-water, the World Bank and the Global Water Partnership.
Speaking during an event to announce the top 30 finalists, GWP Chair, Pablo Bereciartua also congratulated the finalists and thanked the awards partners for supporting the initiative.
“I would like to congratulate the top 30 finalists for making it through to the next stage. We are looking forward to seeing the winners who will be announced at COP 28 in Dubai, UAE. The winners will be supported to upscale and mobilize partners to support them and make a significant impact in the world. Global Water Partnership, the largest global networks-based organization in the water sector, has already partnered with 13 venture funds around the world that will support the winners to upscale. I would like to thank our partners and the evaluation team made up of experts in water, climate change, communications and innovation for the invaluable support for making it possible to narrow the list of entrants to the top 30 finalists,” he said.
The Water Changemaker Innovation Awards 2023 is made possible through the support of various partners and sponsors who share our commitment to addressing water-related challenges. Their contributions enable us to recognize and amplify the efforts of these remarkable changemakers. Some of these partners are African Renaisance Partnership, Ambo Ventures, Saudi Water Partnership Company, Kaist Venture Investment Holdings, Deutsch Kasachische Universitat (German Kazakh University), HIMangel, K-Fund, KAIST Ventures, Mercy Corps Ventures, Yonsei University, WBCSD, Youth Water Network, South South North, Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) and WWF.
The Water Changemaker Innovation Awards 2023 was officially launched during the official kick-off of the largest gathering on water in Asia, the International Asian Water Week in South Korea on 6 July 2023 where the keynote address was delivered by Ban Ki-moon, the 8th Secretary General of the United Nations who said climate change was most visible in water and urged urgent action in the implementation of over 700 UN Water Conference 2023 commitments, aimed at driving transformation towards a climate-resilient water-secure world.
“Climate resilient innovations with potential for scale and replication can expedite our progress by providing governments with technologies and approaches that were not only previously unavailable, but that also have the potential to create sustainable jobs and improve livelihoods. It is my hope that the Water ChangeMaker Awards will bring the best of these innovations to light and link them with new finance sources to enable them to scale,” said the 8th UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.  

Watch the full address given by Ban Ki-moon, the 8th Secretary General of the United Nations, during the Water Changemaker Innovation Awards 2023 launch.

For media interviews: Mr. Teresa Chirwa-Ndanga, Communications Specialist, Water Changemaker Awards 2023 Secretariat, +265247911 or email

Download this Press Release as a PDF.

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