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Call for participants to the UK-China joint workshop on “Water-Wise Cities and Smart Water Systems” - BRIM - Building Resilience Into risk Management

Home » Recent News » Call for participants to the UK-China joint workshop on “Water-Wise Cities and Smart Water Systems”

Call for participants to the UK-China joint workshop on “Water-Wise Cities and Smart Water Systems”

Xi’an, China 11th – 13th September 2018

Under the Researcher Links scheme offered within the British Council’s Newton Fund, we will be holding a workshop on “Water-Wise Cities and Smart Water Systems” in Xi’an, China on 11th – 13th September 2018. The workshop is being coordinated by Professor Guangtao Fu (Centre for Water Systems, University of Exeter, UK) and Professor Xiaochang Wang (Xi’an University of Architecture and Technology, China). We have invited four leading researchers, who will give a keynote and act as mentors for early career researchers:

  • Professor David Butler FREng, Centre for Water Systems, University of Exeter,
  • Dr Ivan Stoianov, Imperial College London,
  • Professor Nanqi Ren, Academician, Harbin Institute of Technology, and
  • Professor Qiang He, Chongqing University.

We are now inviting Early Career Researchers from the UK to apply to attend this workshop. All expenses related to travel, accommodation and meals will be covered by the Newton Researcher Links programme. The application form should be sent to Dr Fanlin Meng () for UK participants before the deadline of 15th May 2018.


The International Water Association has called for developing water-wise cities to tackle global water scarcity which gets worse as the world population is projected to increase to 9.7 billion by 2050 (1.45 billion in China). However, significant scientific and technical challenges remain in moving towards water-wise cities. In the UK, the need for smart water management is evident by the severe drought followed by a flood disaster in 2015. In China, of its 670 cities, about 400 face water shortage and 108 face serious water scarcity including Xi’an. Thus it has never been more urgent to make cities water-wise and water systems smart. This is high on the agenda of governments and needs collaborative efforts of the international research communities.

The UK-China workshop will focus on new methods and emerging technologies that can be used for design, planning and management of water-wise cities. In particular, it will cover the following topics: 1) conceptual and methodological developments in resilience analysis and their application; 2) water reuse and recycling technologies and 3) smart water systems, ICT technologies, and decision analytics. The workshop will provide a platform for researchers, urban planners and engineers to discuss critical issues and main challenges, share the latest research outcomes, and demonstrate the best practices in developing water-wise cities and smart water systems.

The workshop will provide a unique opportunity for 40 UK and China participants to share research expertise and networking. During the workshop early career researchers will have the opportunity to present their research in the form of a short oral presentation and discuss this with leading researchers from the UK and China. There will be a focus on building links for future collaboration and participants will be selected on the basis of their research potential and ability to build longer term links.

The British Council and Newton Researcher Links will cover the costs related to participation in the workshop, including: economy class travel (both international and local), accommodation and meals. Costs for the visa will be covered; however participants will be responsible for making all the necessary arrangements. Although the cost of travel and medical insurance will not be covered by the British Council, participants are encouraged to purchase suitable insurance. The British Council accepts no responsibility for any problems which may occur when the participants are in-country.

Location and Date

The workshop will be held on 11th – 13th September 2018 in Xi’an, China. The workshop venue is the Grand New Century Hotel, close to the campus of Xi’an University of Architecture and Technology. Xi’an, a historical capital of China, is a transport hub in the northwest and can be easily reached by flights and high speed trains. The UK participants should arrive on 10th September.

A submitted application will be taken to indicate participant availability for these dates and their commitment to attend if selected. Please be advised that attendance for the full three-day workshop is mandatory.

Application and Deadline

The full application form must be completed and submitted by 15th May 2018 and sent to

Dr Fanlin Meng at .

 Eligibility Criteria

  • Applications must be submitted using the Researcher Links application form.
  • Participants must be Early Career Researchers (ECR): An ECR is defined as holding a PhD (or having equivalent research experience) and having up to 10 years post-PhD research experience.
  • Participants must have a research or academic position (either a permanent post, research contract, or fellowship etc.) at a recognised research institution in the UK.

Quality Assessment

  • Professional experience and relevance of the applicant’s research area to the workshop.
  • Motivation and level of potential contribution to the aims of the workshop.
  • Description of the long term personal and professional impact expected through the participation in the workshop.
  • Ability to disseminate workshop’s outcomes to their peers.
  • Eligibility check.

Notification of results

Applicants will be notified by email one month of the application deadline.

Equal Opportunities

The British Council is committed to equal opportunities and diversity in all its activities and this includes the avoidance of any bias in the assessment of applications due to gender, disability, racial or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, or religious belief. Participants’ selection undertaken by workshop organisers must not contravene this policy. Extra support to enable participation of early career researchers with special needs will be given.

Please see the link below for detail on British Council policies that relate to your work- adherence to these policies are British Council Requirements . Please refer to brand guidelines as directed by the British Council office in the country where you will be delivering your workshop.


For general enquiries concerning this call, please email:

Dr Fanlin Meng


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