The Future of Water

What is the future of water? What can we do now to make this future as bright as possible? Can water be made, protected, purified, stored or transported in ways that are more efficient then what we are doing today?

'Hidden' by Matt Costello at Surface Tension Exhibit (Science Gallery)

Water is a potentially all-encompassing theme – from the amazing physical properties of water, to its destructive and life-giving power in nature, and its role in both human development and conflict. It flows through us, as blood, sweat and tears. It is venerated, coveted, spoiled and fought over. It has as many meanings and functions as it has physical forms; we regularly encounter water as liquid, solid and vapour. Water can be soothing, an instrument of healing, accelerated through water cannon as a weapon, or used to cut rock and metal. One billion people lack access to it in its most valuable form, as clean drinking water. Clean water is running out – and around the world it is used as a weapon of power and a tool in political conflict.

What innovations might help us to acquire new sources of water, or help us to conserve it? What is our relationship to water? What will a water-scarce future look like? What creative ways are there of envisaging this? With Dublin facing likely water shortages in the coming decades, the exhibition could help audiences to inform and involve themselves in the complex global and local issues around water, and the choices this city is likely to face in the near future. How can the works on exhibition link the local to the global?

An approach inspired by the Future of Water initiative led by Science Gallery and Trinity College Dublin involving a number of European Partners and Harvard University.