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When Action Plans Yield No Actions: Challenges of ImplementingNon-Revenue Water Reduction Strategies in an Urban Water Utilityin Uganda
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Land and Water Resources Engineering.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The classical approach to water loss management in a piped water supply system is to gain anunderstanding of the underlying factors contributing to losses, both physical and non-physical,within the system, and there after to formulate and implement strategies and actions aimed attackling these underlying causes. However, undertaking extensive root-cause analysis, and generating detailed Action Plans as an output of this process, does not in itself guaranteeeffective redress in the face of high system losses, nor do detailed Action Plans automatically translate into effective remedial actions. Based on experiences within a real-life organization, this paper explores the challenge of moving from planning to action and from problem analysis to theeffective implementation of identified solutions, and a number of prerequisites to achieving this end are proposed.

Keyword [en]
Non-revenue water reduction, Action plans, Water loss management, Urban water supply systems, Performance improvement initiatives
National Category
Water Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-11917OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-11917DiVA: diva2:289667
Note
QC 20100723Available from: 2010-01-25 Created: 2010-01-25 Last updated: 2010-07-23Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Water supply management in an urban utility: A prototype decision support framework
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Water supply management in an urban utility: A prototype decision support framework
2009 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this study, four real-life problem situations were used to explore the challenges of developing and implementing decision support tools for planning and management within an urban water utility. The study sought to explore how the degree of adoption of formal decision support tools in practice, generally perceived to be low, could be improved. In the study, an Action Research (AR) approach was used. AR is an inquiry process that involves partnership between researchers and practitioners for the purpose of addressing a real-life problem issue, while simultaneously generating scientific knowledge. Unlike other research methods where the researcher seeks to study organizational phenomena but not to change them, the action researcher attempts to create organizational change and simultaneously to study the process.

During the study, a number of prototype data management tools were developed. GIS-based spatial analysis and visualisation tools were extensively used to inform and enhance the processes of participatory problem identification and structuring, while a number of modelling tools were applied in the generation and evaluation of alternative solutions. As an outcome of the study, a prototype framework for the application of decision support tools within an urban water supply planning and management context was proposed.

The study highlighted the challenges of embedding formal decision support processes within existing work systems in organizations, and recommendations were made on how best to achieve this. The AR approach was found to be useful in bridging the gap between academic research and technological practice, supporting the development of computerised planning and decision support tools of practical benefit to organizations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2009. x, 45 p.
Series
Trita-LWR. PHD, ISSN 1650-8602 ; 1054
Keyword
Decision support systems; Geographic information systems; Participatory planning; Urban water supply management; Decision support framework; Action research
National Category
Water Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-11900 (URN)978-91-7415-543-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2010-02-05, Conference Room, Department of Food Science and Technology, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20100723Available from: 2010-01-25 Created: 2010-01-21 Last updated: 2010-07-23Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
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  • vancouver
  • Other style
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  • Other locale
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Output format
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