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Artificial Intelligence Solutions for Better Water Supply Management in the Philippines

Data-driven “intelligent” applications have disrupted daily life. Innovative water utilities can improve their performance by taking advantage of the digital technology revolution. Water utilities can maximise information and data available to make better decisions while improving service delivery and reducing costs by leveraging the power of artificial intelligence algorithms and big data analytics.

To address this, a Philippine international management school and research institution has deployed and operationalised its joint project with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the Manila Water Company through its Analytics, Computing, and Complex Systems Laboratory.

The collaborative effort aims to improve water supply distribution in Metro Manila’s East Zone. It will be used to forecast dam levels in Angat, La Mesa, and Ipo so that households, businesses, and other industries can be served. To predict dam levels, the research institution’s Artificial Intelligence (AI)-powered software uses historical water levels, rainfall volume, and indicators of El Nio or La Nia.

“Thanks to this collaboration with the research institution and support from DOST, we can now develop and advocate for data-driven policies towards effective allocation and management of our water supply. Coupled with the continued good cooperation with key government agencies, this will help mitigate the risks associated with water supply fluctuations brought about by climate change,” said the Director for Corporate Strategy & Investor Relations of Manila Water Company.

This project was made possible with support from DOST’s Collaborative Research and Development to Leverage Philippine Economy (CRADLE) Programme and monitoring efforts from the DOST-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD).

“With much data that is already out there, it is high time that we maximise the power of emerging technologies like AI and machine learning to improve and affect the daily lives of Filipinos. The research institution forecast modelling fulfils this by seamlessly providing apt agencies with useful data as the basis for decision and policy making on the water supply to avoid shortages. Partnering with the institutions and the water supply company allows us to leverage on our combined resources and expertise to fulfil a common objective—to support the growth of the Philippine Innovation ecosystem,” said DOST-PCIEERD Executive Director.

The research institution actively engages the private and public sectors in advanced analytics research and development projects. It is the research institution’s first corporate laboratory and the Philippines’ first of its kind.

“The impact of AI and Data Science projects like these goes beyond just solving the immediate needs of consumers,” said project lead and research institution Executive Managing Director. “Here, our goal is to bridge the gap between theory and practise by creating effective and practical solutions to real-world problems through data-driven support tools. We have a multidisciplinary team of experienced and highly trained data scientists with access to the research institution world-class resources and facilities, including a 1.2 petaflop supercomputer—the fastest in the Philippines—enabling us to collaborate and operationalise solutions with different industries, government agencies, and various organisations, and help innovate through R&D initiatives”.

The research institution actively engages the private and public sectors in advanced analytics research and development projects. It is the research institution’s first corporate laboratory and the Philippines’ first of its kind.

The focus of such statistics is on the option of maximising current water resources. This optimisation and automation are possible thanks to AI’s decision-making abilities. AI-driven planning allows government agencies and water departments to understand real-time water loss and misuse, design and implement comprehensive distribution networks, and maximise revenue as the financial agenda.

As a result, many existing business tools can be applied to the water sector. Hybrid artificial intelligence models can aid in the improvement of water systems around the world. Water utilities can test the potential benefits of AI techniques by launching low-risk, low-scale pilot projects, which can also be used to assess their technological capabilities and define a realistic ICT road map.

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