UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Performance management framework for small to medium sized water utilities : conceptualization to development and implementation Haider, Husnain


To ensure safe and secure water supply, water utilities are experiencing challenges of climate change, socio-economic viability, and rapid rate of environmental degradation. Core of water utility business deals with managing assets and services which can be divided into functional components, such as water resource management and environmental stewardship, operational practices, personnel productivity, physical infrastructure, customer service, public health security, socio-economic issues, as well as financial viability. To be a sustainable water utility, major impetus is to enhance performance efficiency and effectiveness of the functional components to ensure high level of customer satisfaction. Due to limited human and financial resources, small and medium sized water utilities (SMWU) are facing even further challenges related to performance enhancement. The participation of SMWU in Canada is almost negligible in National Water and Wastewater Initiative (NWWBI) so far. Consequently, such SMWU are managing their functional components without knowing whether they are meeting their primary performance objectives or not. Hence, there is an urgent need of a comprehensive framework for adopting performance management in SMWU. In this research, an integrated performance management framework, consisting of five models has been developed. The overall framework initiates with the identification of performance indicators (PIs) based on a critical review, followed by the model using multicriteria decision analysis for the selection of PIs encompassing all the functional components. These PIs are then evaluated through an inter-utility performance benchmarking model (IU-PBM), which efficiently deals with the exiting data limitations in SMWU. Based on the IU-PBM results, an intra-utility performance management model (In-UPM) has been developed to hone in the performance of sub-components and different water supply systems within the utility for decision making under uncertainty. Finally, a risk-based model has been developed to improve customer satisfaction in SMWU. This research will help utility managers across Canada and potentially other parts of the World to enhance performance management for SMWU. The utility managers can effectively implement this framework, with available resources, to achieve socio-economic benefits, as they can: i) identify the underperforming functional components, and can take corrective actions rationally; ii) manage customer satisfaction with efficient inventory management and data analyses.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada