A Decision Model for Identifying and Solving Problems in an Urban Water Supply System

Abstract

Water supply systems in urban areas may become deficient due to increasing demand, which accompanies population growth but is further jeopardized by equipment aging and problems related to maintenance management. Moreover, operating the system involves a large number of issues that a decision-maker must address simultaneously. Therefore, the use of tools to aid the decision process is quite relevant in providing a better understanding of the problem and to generate a recommendation that better meets the wishes of the decision-maker. This study presents a model based on the value-focused thinking approach, requiring only partial information in the multi-attribute analysis by using linear value functions and FITradeoff, entailing less effort to achieve the ideal alternative. The model was applied to the operations manager of the water supply company in the central region of Olinda in the state of Pernambuco, Brazil. Consequently, the model yielded a deep analysis of the manager’s reasoning, which was transcribed through the objective’s hierarchy, and reached a solution to the problems of the local water supply system.

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Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful for the support and contribution received from COMPESA (Sanitation Company of Pernambuco) and the funding provided by CNPq (Brazilian Council for Scientific and Technological Development).

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Correspondence to Madson Bruno da Silva Monte.

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Monte, M.B.d., Morais, D.C. A Decision Model for Identifying and Solving Problems in an Urban Water Supply System. Water Resour Manage 33, 4835–4848 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11269-019-02401-w

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Keywords

  • Value-focused thinking
  • FITradeoff
  • Multiattribute analysis
  • Urban planning
  • Water management