Towards resilient water supply in centralized control and decentralized execution mode




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IWA Publishing



Peer reviewed



This paper shares a vision that sustainable water supply requires resilient water infrastructures which are presumably in the centralized control and decentralized execution (CCDE) mode with multiscale resilience. The CCDE should be planned based on the multiscale structure of water infrastructures, in which the systems are divided into a number of hierarchically organized subsystems. The CCDE allows independent execution of all subsystems under normal situations yet coordination of subsystems at different scales to mitigate any disturbances during failure events, i.e. the multiscale resilience. This vision is discussed in detail for water distribution systems (WDSs). Specifically, the conceptual design of the multiscale CCDE is described, and progress on understanding the multiscale structures in WDSs is summarized based on the literature review. Furthermore, a few theories consistent with the multiscale CCDE concept are discussed which include the decomposition theorems, fractal theory, control theories, and complex network theory. The next step in the vision will be to identify the optimal multiscale structure for the CCDE based on the best trade-off of different goals of WDS analysis and management. This process needs support from not only innovative modelling tools and extensive datasets and theories but also inspiring exemplar systems, e.g. natural systems.


open access article



Diao, K. (2021) Towards resilient water supply in centralized control and decentralized execution mode. Journal of Water Supply: Research and Technology-Aqua,


Research Institute

Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development (IESD)