All above problems indicate that in many Swiss municipalities current infrastructure is operated in such a way that the potential capacity is not fully used.
The aim of the POLAAR project is 1) to identify existing organisational and political obstacles to the effective operation of CSOs and 2) to develop policy instruments that could be effective as measures or incentives to overcome these obstacles.
With the support of the FOEN (Federal Office for the Environment), the interrelationships in Swiss practice will be examined more closely. The focus is on monitoring specific municipalities over the duration of the project (longitudinal study). Structured interviews with representatives of authorities, industry, professional associations and science are planned. Comparisons will be made with examples from neighbouring countries where other legal requirements and ordinances apply.
In the long term, the use of policy instruments in practice could help to improve water protection during wet-weather by applying technological innovations (sensor technology, wireless data transmission, automated data evaluation). To ensure that all stakeholders (municipalities, wastewater associations, authorities, planning offices, etc.) benefit from the ongoing digitalization process, we are developing proposals for a uniform, common strategy (policy) for Swiss urban water management.