GROHE Water Prize 2024

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The GROHE Water Prize awards visionary projects that are pushing the boundaries of design within the built environment and water. GROHE will award £10,000 to the winning project to help enhance the scheme.

About the prize

We are delighted that WAF’s founder partner, GROHE, will once again support the Water Prize. GROHE is supporting research into tackling unique challenges that water presents, with the winning initiative awarded £10,000 of funding. The results of this work will be presented at WAF 2024 on the Festival Hall Stage and the overall winner will receive their trophy at the Gala Dinner.

The GROHE Water Prize 2024 will reward first-class thought leadership, innovation and research initiatives. The programme will supply funding which will contribute towards work in universities or other research institutions investigating aspects of these subjects.

    The entry timeline

    • Call for applications from March 2024
    • Entry deadline: 5 July
    • Judging will take place in August
    • Winning research initiative announced in September
    • Winner to present on the Festival Hall Stage at WAF 2024 Singapore (6-8 November 2024)*
    • Prize-giving at Gala Awards Dinner on the final day of WAF (8 November 2024)*

    The GROHE Water Prize 2024 is free to enter. You do not have to enter any other WAF categories to participate.

    * The winner is required to attend the festival in Singapore from 6-8 November 2024. A complimentary ticket will be provided however travel and accommodation costs would be the responsibility of the winner.

    Entry criteria

    An award of £10,000 will be made to a research programme investigating the architectural implications of some aspect of water in respect of buildings or the built environment.

    The research, current or proposed, should:

    • Identify a new challenge or opportunity, unresearched or under-researched, related to design and water
    • Advance an understanding of water in relation to the built environment, for example in relation to storage, management, distribution, use, recycling etc
    • Explain how the research is addressing the issue(s) identified
    • Outline the potential outcome of the research
    • Say how the research award would contribute to the outcome
    • Entries will be accepted from architects, designers, universities or other research institutions

    2023 Winner

    Netherlands practice UArchitects has won this year’s GROHE Water Prize with a proposal for ‘microcolonies’ of floating platforms in Bangladesh, intended to cope with extreme weather events, combat poverty and provide a new model of how communities can address the challenges of climate change.

    The annual prize, launched six years ago in conjunction with World Architecture Festival (WAF), will be presented at this year’s Festival in Singapore (29 November to 1 December).

    Misak Terzibasiyan from UArchitects describes the proposal as a scaling up of a basic ‘microhome’ unit, to allow for the growing of food and even raising of livestock on connected platforms, with a community hub created to provide services (such as education and storage) to clusters of family homes. He notes that clean water production is also of great importance for this micro-colony, necessitating additional in-depth research to find the best technical and cost-effective solution for providing water for consumption.

    A development plan and construction sequencing form part of the proposal, which envisages the £10,000 prize money being used in conjunction with the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) and the Government of Bangladesh. There will also be close coordination with the Foreign Affairs department of the Netherlands, the Dutch embassy in Dhaka, and the architecture department of the Technical University, Eindhoven.

    ‘This pilot project can be a milestone in adapting to climate change through self-sustaining floating communities’, says the architect.

    The judges (see list below) admired the proposal for its social and economic ambition as well as its design proposition – simultaneously fighting poverty and climate change in a country where extreme weather events can impoverish communities overnight. They also liked the attitude of the project to water, regarding it as something to be embraced and used, rather than resisted and feared.

    Other proposals shortlisted in this year’s awards included a programme of revitalisation in Antiquoia, Columbia; and a University of Stuttgart project to cool building interiors and facades through use of water-absorbing materials.

    GROHE is part of LIXIL, the Tokyo-based company specialising in water technology, housing products and building technology.

    This year’s judges were: Antoine Besseyre des Horts and Patrick Speck, LIXIL design leaders respectively for the Asia Pacific and Europe/Middle East/North Africa regions; Jeremy Melvin, WAF Curator; and Paul Finch, WAF Programme Director.

    GROHE Water Prize 2023 Finalists

    Micro Colony by UArchitects / Misak Terzibasiyan

    HydroSKIN: Façade for Urban Rainwater Retention and Evaporative Cooling by University of Stuttgart

    Kurita Innovation Hub by NIKKEN SEKKEI

    A Sustainable Wetland Ecological Restoration of Xlnglong Lake by China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Institute

    ANTIOQUIA MUNICIPAL RIVER PARKS // Project for the planning, protection and valuation of water and the landscape in Antioqui by GOBERNACION DE ANTIOQUIA - JUAN PABLO LOPEZ - SEBASTIAN MONSALVE

    Founder Partner