Greener cities by digitalising park maintenance

11 March 2021

Having a single digital system could improve and optimise Gothenburg’s management of its parks and green spaces. That’s the belief of IT consultancy firm Decerno, which has been invited to develop and test a needs-based management system in cooperation with parts of the City of Gothenburg, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and other companies, in the context of its participation in the Sustainable Smart Parks test bed.

— By consolidating the City’s different systems, we can make its administration more efficient and free up resources that can then be redirected to several smaller green spaces, which are just as important to the city but don’t always get the same amount of attention as the larger parks. If we also add sensors that alert us when a lawn needs to be mowed or a tree needs to be watered, we’ll see even greater improvements in functionality,” Viktor Hellman, IoT business development manager at Decerno, enthuses.

Decerno’s suggestion of automated irrigation was what initially led the firm to join Sustainable Smart Parks, a test bed that uses several of Gothenburg’s parks and green spaces as a testing ground for innovative techniques and new ways of working. The idea that a sensor-based, self-learning system could signal when certain measures are needed and even turn on sprinklers by itself, for example, is still a crucial part of the transition to a more effective, needs-based way of working. But as the project continued, Viktor Hellman and his colleague Henrik Karlsson soon realised there was a much greater need for digitalisation than what they’d initially thought.

Henrik Karlsson och Viktor Hellman, Decerno
Henrik Karlsson and Viktor Hellman, Decerno

— Today, City employees sometimes find themselves forced to send a single report to seven different departments, all of which require a different template. We want to develop a shared system that information can be uploaded into and downloaded from in whatever format required,” consultant manager Henrik Karlsson at Decerno says.

For Hellman and Karlsson, a major advantage to being part of a test bed project like Sustainable Smart Parks is the way it allows their team to try out solutions and get instant feedback from those who use the system in their daily work. They also value the opportunity to engage in discussion with the City of Gothenburg and hear the latter’s thoughts on what a digital system should look like.

— Digitalisation offers a wealth of opportunities, but many cities need some time before they’re ready to take the big step. Here at Decerno, we hope to learn from the other partners, and contribute new thoughts and ideas that may eventually change society for the better,” Viktor Hellman concludes.

Sustainable Smart Parks 
Idrotts- och föreningsförvaltningen, Park- och naturförvaltningen, Lokalförvaltningen, Familjebostäder, Göteborgs Stads Leasing ABJohanneberg Science ParkSveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Decerno AB and Husqvarna AB 

The initial development of the test bed was funded by Vinnova up until August 2020, under the Utmaningsdriven innovation (UDI)programme. Sustainable Smart Parks will receive a further SEK 5 million in funding from Vinnova between 2020–2023 under the project Testbäddar för samhällets utmaningar.Partners: Park- och naturförvaltningen,Göteborgs Stads Leasing ABJohanneberg Science ParkSveriges lantbruksuniversitet) contribute with another SEK 5 million. 

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För mer information, kontakta:

Evdoxia Kouraki, Project Manager

+46 709 32 92 17 LinkedIn