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2.6 Historic study of regimes and dominating models for building and management of municipal WS and streets


To look ahead, we should also see and learn from past events. The focus of this project is to investigate the longer historical development lines around municipal infrastructure in Sweden.

The aim is to put today’s and tomorrow’s challenges in asset management in a larger context. Has there been a Swedish model for municipal infrastructure? In which systems have builders and system administrators acted during different phases of the historical development?

Have there been dominant models for construction and management? And what role has, for example, urbanisation played?


The study highlights the historical legacy of municipal infrastructure, focusing on the factors that need to be considered to create the conditions for innovative and sustainable management of streets, drinking water and sanitation.
The results are presented in a report in English
in digital format: Research report and excerpts on the history of municipal streets, water, and sanitation in Sweden.
In fall 2023, a revised report will be published in book form by International Water Association Publishing (IWAP) with the title: Articulating publicness in infrastructure. The history of municipal streets, water, and sanitation in Sweden.

Impact on society

1. Comparative history of infrastructure systems that were previously dealt with
separately, allowing for reinterpretation of previous results.
2. links to research in medical, social, cultural, economic, technical and political history and to societal factors that have influenced infrastructure systems.
3. Shows that the development of streets, water and sanitation has left a historical legacy that still affects how municipal infrastructure is managed today.