From innovation idea to grand product

The Future City Flow project started as a vision thirty years ago – but the technical conditions were lacking. Today it is a reality – with a platform that makes solutions visible to reduce floods and discharges of untreated wastewater.

The core of the project is to develop solutions for municipalities and water companies in order to optimize the operation of sewage systems and make the right investment decisions. In the project, a decision support system has been developed that simplifies the flow of information between actors who are involved in the design of the city’s wastewater management.

– We can make this possible through advanced simulation, analysis and target group-adapted visualization of data that helps those responsible to find cost-effective solutions and optimize the control of existing systems, says Lars-Göran Gustafsson, CEO of DHI Sweden.

Highly modern platform

With the help of Future City Flow, they want to enable optimal management of wastewater flows – in the near future and in the future. In this way, floods and unnecessary operating costs are avoided, while investments are made in the right place at the right time and discharges of untreated wastewater are minimized.

– We have put a lot of effort into understanding the needs while we have looked at what opportunities there are. The result is a digital platform with the latest technology in data analysis and simulation. This enables a description of the complex connections that affect the issues the actors struggle with, says Lars-Göran Gustafsson.

“It should be fun to solve difficult challenges”

Behind the project, which has received financial support from Vinnova, is DHI Sweden together with a dozen other players. DHI Sweden puts innovation and development high on the agenda, with the goal of creating products and services that create value in the industry.

– Future City Flow is a successful example of such a product, but it would not have been possible without knowledge and efforts from other parties in the project, says Marinette Hagman, project manager and innovation manager at DHI Sweden and continues:

– It is important that the platform is easy to use and understand. We realized early on that the design should mimic the strength and ease of use of computer games – and that’s where we are now. We have a platform where we can pedagogically produce results and which at the same time functions as a teaching support. It should be fun to solve difficult challenges.

Additional projects in the pipeline

As a sister project, Future City Water has emerged and is about delivering solutions that secure our most important food – drinking water.

– The idea is to increase digitization in the entire drinking water chain to minimize leakage, secure access and optimize operations. To succeed, we need to use the latest technology in sensors, simulation, data analysis with AI and optimization, says Lars-Göran Gustafsson.


DHI Sverige AB is an independent research and consulting organization with specialized expertise in water supply, sewage technology, water resources, the coast and the sea. The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of DHI GROUP and has around 50 employees in offices in Gothenburg, Stockholm, Växjö and Malmö. DHI Sweden, together with several players, is behind the innovation project Future City Flow – a decision support system for forecasting, control and management of additional water in sewage networks. Read more on DHI Sweden’s website.

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