IWN come away from the World Water Congress in Tokyo with important validation and learnings

Big Data and Analytics Program Leader David Bergmann was an attendee at the IWA World Water Congress in Tokyo last week and came away from the event with valuable insights and learning for the Intelligent Water Networks (IWN) program.

The workshop on Digitisation of Water – Trends and Opportunities highlighted the problems that are common around the world. Many of the issues talked about have been part of the Big Data and Analytics trials, results of which are to be released shortly.

Water utilities around the world lose around $9.6 billion a year because of non-revenue water. Tom Mills from Xylem believes that the effective use of analytics, a digitisation of water networks and good responses can bring this under control. Predicting leaks and minimising disruption to customers can play a big role in this – again, this is encouraging to hear as it confirms that the IWN Big Data and Analytics program is working towards solutions that will have real value for members and the wider industry.

The developments in AI have made programs like Big Data extremely important. Professor Dragan Savic’s Hydroinfomatics concept makes it clear that prescriptive analytics can improve customer service delivery and cut down response time from days to hours.

Work done in IWN has been echoed around the world and Hideyuki Tadokoro from Hitachi described a ‘system of systems view’ that was similar to the concept proposed within the Data and Analytics program – as did Lars Therkidsen when describing the goals for The Greater Copenhagen Utility (HOFOR). 

Data and Analytics was investigated further by Rebekah Eggers, who works for IBM. Their Digital Twin concept fits in with the working of the Big Data and Analytics program and learnings can be made by studying it.