A Systems-based Approach to Creating Value from Infrastructure Interdependencies

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference Paperpeer-review


Current planning and appraisal processes treat infrastructure as discrete, sector-specific assets, and as a consequence fail to identify and exploit potentially valuable interdependencies. Similarly, these silo-based approaches are unable to identify potentially hazardous and costly interdependencies in a systematic manner. A major challenge then for providers of modern infrastructure, is to realise the innovative opportunities in interdependencies, and so increase value-for-money, sustainability and resilience. To achieve this it is necessary to recognise that real-world infrastructure ‘systems’ are highly interconnected, both with each other and with the socio-economic and natural systems in which they are located. This paper presents a focused set of the findings from a research partnership between the University of Bristol and University College London, sponsored by HM Treasury in the UK. It proposes an ‘open-systems’, cross-sectoral approach to create and manage beneficial infrastructure interdependencies, and comprises a framework of principles (‘stewardship’, ‘shared-governance’ and ‘interdiscipliniarity’), and associated and systems-based tools. These have been applied to four case studies relating to the UK’s National Infrastructure Programme, three of which are summarized in this paper.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages33
Publication statusPublished - 3 Oct 2013
EventInternational Symposium of Next Generation Infrastructure - SMART Infrastructure Facility, University of Wollongong, Australia, Australia
Duration: 1 Oct 20134 Oct 2014


ConferenceInternational Symposium of Next Generation Infrastructure


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