Goals of the task
In Task 5.3 the RP methodology for the trans-sectoral approach is to be developed. The methodology will be realised and visualised to encourage resource efficient planning processes. Roughly this task includes the following components:
- Synergies must be analysed with view on qualitative and quantitative benefits for trans-sectoral urban infrastructure planning.
- The methodology will be elaborated and organised in the RP Guideline. The RP Guideline must be developed and structured into the components Knowledge Blocks, technical Tools and the decision making and implementation method/ tool Obstacle based Planning.
- All results, methods, experiences and information provided by RP must be sequenced in terms of logic in a Roadmap. This allows interested cities to follow the RP approach in clear steps.
Work done to achieve the goals:
Identification of synergies for the trans-sectoral methodology:
With the purpose of identifying the synergies between the sectors and technologies, sector experts of the RP team (AT-Verband, IER, ifak, IZES, Ostfalia, TUB) held several meetings. In order to gain a common understanding the RP sector team discussed and decided the following definitions:
- Interlinkage: Potential process-related technical linkage of goods (energy and/ or material flows) between at least two sectors
- Synergy: Trans-sectoral interaction of processes to generate added value (technology based in the local context)
- Input: The totality of the goods (desired/ undesired) used in a process
- Output: The totality of the goods generated in a process (desired/ undesired)
For supporting the identification of interlinkages/ synergies between the sectors, the sector experts developed sector maps, which contain information about relevant technologies; technology related input/ output streams, and potential interlinkages to other sectors. The colleagues from IZES transferred the sector maps into a common format. The RP sector expert group analysed the sector maps and discussed the potential interlinkages between the sector technologies. It was clearly worked out that effective synergies can only be represented on the direct technology level and in the relevant local context of the cities. This means that compatibility concerning throughput of different facilities, location, and other aspects of the local context are main influencing factors of synergies. So, the interlinkages are representing the trans-sectoral synergy potential. Whether and to what extent interlinkages become technological synergies is decided in the scenarios (WP6), since here the local context comes into effect.
Values for the technology related input/ output streams were provided to Task 5.4 as important input for developing the sectoral technology models. The sector maps are a very good basis for explaining the trans-sectoral idea to stakeholders in the cities. The following figures show the sector maps.
Fig. 50: Water/ wastewater - technologies & interlinkages
Fig. 51: Energy - technologies & interlinkages
Fig. 52: Urban agriculture/ food - technologies & interlinkages
Fig. 53: Waste - technologies & interlinkages
Transferring sector maps to an interactive knowledge and information network
The representation of the different RP sectors in the sector maps is the current working basis for analysing and describing the trans-sectoral interlinkages. In a second step, the two-dimensional sector maps are to be connected three-dimensionally in order to be able to display the interlinkages in a comprehensible manner across all sectors and technologies. A number of knowledge blocks, with the corresponding technology information, will additionally be integrated. Various graph-theoretic network concepts of information networks were researched and the decision was made to do the graphic processing in form of a multigraph incl. the following layout algorithms:
- Force-directed graphs for the representation of the network topology
- Sunburst diagrams for the implementation and navigation of the knowledge database
- Hierarchical Edge Building graphs and Sankey diagrams, for representing the relationships and information flow between nodes
Fig. 54: Selected layout algorithms (a-c) for the multigraph approach
Structuring the RP Guideline
The RP guideline is intended to provide all the information gathered in the project in a comprehensible and structured way. In the first phase of the project, the requirements for a guideline were formulated based on the experiences made in the case cities as well as the needs expressed by the cities. It became obvious that information demand is high and also that information must be provided on different levels of detail in order to consider the different levels of know-how (from overview to detailed information).
In the first year of RP various options regarding the structure of the RP Guideline were discussed taking the different demands of the intended users into consideration. The final decision was to conceptualise the RP Guideline as a “Knowledge System”, a flexible system considering different levels of background, know-how and interest of the users.
The Knowledge System is divided into 3 parts:
- Application part – focussing on RP methods and procedures (incl. data correlation)
- Information part – focussing on (background) information, technologies, experiences
- Tools – the tools developed or adapted within RP
Fig. 55: Structure of the RP Knowledge System
Both the Application and information part are split into four analogous sections (data, trans-sectoral scenario development, simulation, and implementation). Under these sections the RP output and results are comprehensively compiled in various knowledge blocks.
The Application part provides the methods developed and applied within RP in condensed and comprehensive knowledge blocks. The Information part contains e.g. additional background information to the methods procedure, experiences made by the case cities when applying the methods, technology information on different levels of detail. The topic Obstacle Based Planning (OBP)/ Theory of Constraints (TOC) was integrated in this system and is part of the implementation section (Application and information part).
The contents of the knowledge blocks are generated successively and are currently mostly available as deliverables or “technologies compilation”. These will be processed towards user-friendly knowledge blocks in the second half of the project. The knowledge block contents will be hyperlinked, so that additional or related information can be found in other knowledge blocks. Within WP11 – Capacity development – specific knowledge blocks will be developed for different target groups. In order to synchronise the work, AT-Verband and FRA-UAS are in close dialogue.
The Tools provide in general all the developed procedures and tools in the sense of programs such as MFA Tool, Computation Tool, Simulation Tool, etc. Material Flow Analysis (MFA) within RP is done in a first step by the MFA program Umberto (WP4). This is a generally accepted and audited MFA program, unfortunately it is very expensive and complex to use. In order to find an easily accessible, low budget and uncomplicated alternative several MFA tools have been checked. STAN (subSTance flow ANalysis) a freeware that helps to perform material flow analyses according to the Austrian standard ÖNorm S 2096 was identified as a potential alternative. AT-Verband and the tool developer TU Wien have been discussing to develop an interface to Excel in order to make data transfer more comfortable.
In the first project phase it was decided to use the non-commercial part of the LIWA Tool (developed by ifak within the Megacities Program) as program basis for (scenario) simulation (Task 5.4).
All the provided tools can also be applied independently from the knowledge blocks.
As information sharing was explicitly wanted by the case cities the Knowledge System was conceptualised as an interactive system. The selected program platform includes WIKI functions, so that cities can exchange information and data. The details about how and for which sections the WIKI function should be provided must still be discussed. For establishing the Knowledge System a suitable data portal software program was required. Because there were many useful tools available, a criteria list was defined for the selection process. Important criterion was that the software should run under GNU license and the operating system as 100% free software
Tab. 19: Selection criteria and result of the tested software
More than 30 tools were analysed and partly tested. Out of these, five potential useful tools were identified. These tools were discussed between AT-Verband and FRA-UAS to find out which program would be most suitable to also serve the demands of the Capacity Development aspects. The final decision was for CORE Weblication.
The RP Roadmap can be established and all knowledge blocks sequenced when the RP knowledge blocks, tools, etc. are in the process of finalisation. The concept discussed so far includes a query to guide the user through the RP methodology. The design and logic of the query is challenging and in order to make it useful for the cities it is necessary to get feedback and advice from local stakeholders.
Results so far:
In a first step the terms interlinkage and synergy were clearly defined. During several meetings the RP sector experts transferred the information on sector technologies (all input/ output streams) into sector maps. Potential interlinkages between the technologies were worked out by the expert group as an important input for Task 5.4 and Task 5.6. In order to visualise the interlinkages between all technologies in the five (four when considering water supply and wastewater treatment combined) sector maps a three dimensional graphical basis was selected and is currently being implemented.
The RP Knowledge System was discussed, decided and structured. It includes the datasets which originally were intended to be filed in the data warehouse. The Knowledge system combines data storage and information provision in a way to be of most benefit for the user (cities). A suitable program environment for the Knowledge System was found and is currently being introduced. The knowledge blocks can now be filled step by step. The (web-based) data warehouse is available as a draft version at University of Tübingen to particularly store data with high memory demand; although there are still some access problems for users to be solved.