Insights

Are city councils playing poker with Monopoly money?

What is the outlook for contract operations in the water sector? It doesn’t look great in the short term. On both sides of the Atlantic, remunicipalisation of water and wastewater services has been eating at the edges of the market. In Paris we have seen certain water services return to city control, with ten communities in the surrounding suburbs now looking to...

How much money do you need to make utilities work?

We finally finished our Global Water Market report last night. It is a monster at more than 1,200 pages. The contents list alone is 70 pages long, which should give an idea of the sheer density of information it contains.

One of the last bits of data I was putting together yesterday afternoon was a chart showing how many dollars’ worth of assets water utilities...

The must-have product with a broken financial model

I have been up to my ears in our new Global Water Market forecast this past month. It is a mammoth project – we have had 25 people working on it for most of the past six months.

The first impression one gets from the report is the impossible diversity of the international water sector. The water sector in Thailand is almost unrecognisable when compared to the...

Another bad idea which we need to act on

I discovered this week that there is a far more urgent aspect of the UN High Commission For Human Rights’ consultation period on the human right to water than whether or not private companies should be excluded from water supply (see my analysis from 11 March). More worrying is the possibility that the UNHCHR will create an obligation on utilities to supply a...

Is private water a human rights violation?

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights is currently working on a proposal to introduce a human right to water, which may be worded so as to restrict private sector participation in the industry. An independent investigator, Catarina de Albuquerque, has been appointed to look into the role of the private sector in the human right to water. The deadline for...

Where are the trends in procurement driving us?

“We are driven by the way the water market is organized and procured.” So says design-build consultant Ken Hume in an interview for our forthcoming report on the US water market. It is a pertinent observation with a broad relevance for everyone working in the US water market, as well as those eyeing it for future expansion.

The US procurement system is...