Global water experts converge on RGU for international conference

Experts in the safety of drinking water and the aquatic environment are visiting Aberdeen this week for a five-day international conference.

Robert Gordon University's Institute for Innovation, Design & Sustainability Research (IDEAS), is hosting the Ninth International Water Association Symposium 2011, until 18 August. The event will bring together over 80 delegates comprising environmental scientists and industry professionals from across the UK, Europe, China, Taiwan and the US, to discuss off-flavours in the aquatic environment.

The Symposium provides a forum for specialists and interested participants from water suppliers, academic institutions, research centres and industry, to share the latest findings on the causes, origins and management of off-flavours in drinking water, wastewater, and related aquatic environments such as lakes, rivers, and estuaries.

Professor Linda Lawton, Professor of Environmental Microbiology at the Institute, explains:

"Off-flavours, including unusual odours, are recognised by the water community worldwide to be a major cause of consumer complaints and a loss in confidence of drinking water safety by the general public. These problems can arise from natural or industry sources including spillages of toxic substances, and are also seen in fish tainting and bottled water.

"Despite considerable research over the past twenty years, many issues surrounding this remain unresolved. By bringing the water community together to share expertise, we hope the conference will help address and provide solutions to these problems."

The Conference is being hosted in conjunction with the International Water Association, which through its network of members and experts in research, practice, regulation, industry, consulting and manufacturing, helps professionals create innovative and sustainable solutions to challenging global needs.

Delegates will take part in interactive sessions and workshops, featuring international speakers and presentations, and will explore a number of themes including off-flavours in source water, analytical methods, odours in fish and aquaculture, and sulfur-related odours in water and air.



Notes to Editors:


International Water Association (IWA)

  • The International Water Association is the global network of 10,000 water professionals spanning the continuum between research and practice and covering all facets of the water cycle.
  • The IWA network is structured to promote multi-level collaboration among its diverse membership groups, and to share the benefit of knowledge on water science and management worldwide. The Association helps make the right connections at the right time, thereby sharing cutting-edge research and practice that allows the water sector shape its future.
  • For more information, please visit:


Issued by:

Sarah Grieve

Communications Officer (Faculty of Design & Technology)

Robert Gordon University



AB10 1FR

Tel: 01224 262206