Indikatorer för hållbar utveckling av urbana VA-system? Fältstudie Borås.
Report, 2005

This study forms part of a PhD project on sustainable development indicators (SDIs) for urban water system. The project is in its second phase (post licentiate) and fo-cused on a better understanding of the preconditions for meaningful application of SDIs within organisations. This field study is the second of its kind, aiming at inves-tigating the preconditions for application of SDIs within Swedish water organisations. The field study rests mainly on analyses of various documents and interviews with people employed in or closely connected to Borås publicly owned and governed water organsiation. The interviews were performed during February to April 2005. Interviews and documents in combination contributed to an extensive amount of data, which was analysed and, when necessary, complemented, during the subsequent spring and summer. Concerning sustainable development of the urban water system in Borås, most of those interviewed ask for improvements of the drinking water treatment – and this development has already been initiated. Furthermore, people want the storm water system to develop in the direction of increased local collection (source control). When it comes to the sewage system, the majority of people asked would regard the technique and the system of today as in line with the vision of sustainable development if only the nutrients and soil conditioning substances in sewage sludge could be recycled somehow. There are also, among those interviewed, proponents of more or less substantial modifications of the existing system in order to enable source separation in the future. In Borås there are a number of initiatives including some kind of metrics. The water and sanitation department has identified a set of assessable targets that are to be con-tinually upgraded, an environmental and quality management system is to be intro-duced within short, and at the level of the entire municipality green indicators connected to the national environmental goals are being developed, as well as a set of social indicators. The operation of water and waste water in Borås include numerous indicators and parameters that carry information relevant to sustainable development, although no indicators termed “SDIs” exist. The greatest interest in SDIs is found among people working with strategies and planning within the municipality, i.e. in the Executive Office, which is also the office responsible for organising the development and use of green and social indicators in the municipality. The relevant indicator applications mentioned are planning by objectives, evaluation of performance, internal reporting, benchmarking and (other) external communication. Those hesitant to an increased use of indicators refer primarily to lack of time.

sustainable development indicators

urban water systems


Ulrika Palme

Chalmers, Energy and Environment, Environmental Systems Analysis

Chalmers, Centre for Environment and Sustainability (GMV)

Subject Categories

Other Environmental Engineering

Public Administration Studies

Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources

Report / Division of Environmental Systems Analysis, Chalmers University of Technology: 2005:17

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