Future networks need to be resource efficient, in regards to using less energy, enable easy recovery of resources from wastewater and reduce water losses in distribution systems. At the same time, performance and service levels need to meet ever stringent standards whilst investments and ongoing maintenance of infrastructure are cost-effective. Integral to such networks will be technologies that can acquire data and, in turn, enable systems to be responsive to localized conditions.
Current conditions in urban systems, institutions and regulations are affected, on a short term and on a long term, by changing and uncertain conditions that so-called legacy systems were not designed for or were not considered during their design process. This change and uncertainty requires a flexible or adaptable approach where the system is able to use their active capacity to act to respond on relevant alterations in a performance efficient, timely and cost effective way. This can also be applied to achieve and maintain targeted levels of service during normal operation conditions. However this response will require certain data input.