ENBIS-8 in Athens

21 – 25 September 2008 Abstract submission: 14 March – 11 August 2008

A Methodology for the Detection of Segments of Clients with Homogenous Water Consumption Habits. Application to the City of Barcelona.

22 September 2008, 10:55 – 11:15


Submitted by
Xavier Tort-Martorell
S. Fontdecaba, L. Marco, V. Martinez de Pablo, L. Rodero, J.A. Sanchez,I. Sole, X. Tort-Martorell, J. Zubelzu
UPC (Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya) and Grupo AGBAR
Water management has become a vital concern for both water supply companies and public administrations due to its importance for life and current scarcity in many areas. Many studies have been made trying to explain which factors influence water demand. These studies commonly use ordinary least squares to explain domestic water consumption mainly using economical variables (price), socio-demographic variables (population, age structure of population, nationality) and territorial variables (population density).
Prior to having models for predicting water demand, the goal of our approach has been segmenting clients into meaningful groups in order to better understand the water consumption behaviour. The study is based on a database with more than one million observations from Barcelona and surrounding towns.
Cluster analysis and decision trees have been used to obtain a descriptive segmentation of clients. The result is a stable partition in 6 groups. This segmentation is the same with and without considering the actual water consumption as a variable, which entails a different behaviour on water consumption depending on socio-economical variables. Although the study is based on the case of the Barcelona area, it allows the development of a general methodology, which will be described in the presentation.

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