Sustainable Infrastructure Systems

A sustainable paradigm in the design, construction, and management of infrastructure systems requires a systemic and holistic approach. We no longer design and manage infrastructure independently; we are looking at infrastructure as complex systems-of-systems in which interdependence, emergence, complexity, and uncertainty are critical dimension of analysis. Understanding the emergent properties of infrastructure networks and their impacts on the functionality of individual facilities will unlock new opportunities for fostering sustainability. In this research thrust, we investigate infrastructure at the interface with the society and the environment. Understanding human-infrastructure interaction is at the core of creating novel breakthroughs in design, construction, and management of infrastructure systems in the 21st century.

Ongoing Projects

Network-Level Cost Analysis of Road Infrastructure Systems

The objective of this study is to develop an integrated framework for assessing the cost performance of roadway networks which accounts for the continuous nature of infrastructure networks. The aim of the study is to identify sustainable strategies for enahncing the economic sustainability of infrastructure at the network-level.

LCA and LCC Analysis for Sustainable Design and Construction of Road Infrastructure

The objective of this project is to create a novel methodology for sustainable material selection, design, and construction of road pavements. This project is funded by the Miami-Dade Expressway (MDX) and aims to develop and test a novel integrated approach for life cycle analysis of the environmental impacts and costs for road infrastructure systems.

Collaborators

Dr. Jeremy Gregory (MIT)

Dr. Randolph Kirchain (MIT)

 

Collaborators

Dr. Michael Bienvenu (FIU)

Funding Agency

Sustainability in Infrastructure System-of-Systems (Infrastructure Ecology)

This research investigates the hypothesis that sustainability in urban infrastructure system-of-systems is an emergent property as a result of the coupling effect between: (1) the performance of infrastructure assets and built environment facilities, (2) the decision-making processes and priorities of agencies, and (3) the behaviors and preferences of users. This research will create a robust methodology for ex-ante policy analysis pertaining to urban sustainability at the interface of infrastructure-agency-user interactions.

Past Projects

Ex-Ante Assessment of Financing Policies in Infrastructure System-of-Systems

The overarching objective of this study was to create and evaluate an ex-ante analytical framework for micro-simulation of infrastructure policies under uncertain conditions. The developed framework is based on the abstraction and micro-simulation of the activities and interactions of the major players in the system and its application is demonstrated for the assessment of sustainable financial innovation policies. Using the framework and data obtained from a wide range of sources ranging from historical records and case studies to interviews with subject matter experts, the interdependencies of finance and transportation infrastructure were explored. These interdependencies (e.g., the effects of financial market conditions on the debt-related decisions made by state Departments of Transportation) then were used to develop a hybrid agent-based/system dynamics model for micro-simulation of sustainable financial innovation policies. Using this model and Monte-Carlo experimentation, the policy landscape of transportation infrastructure in the U.S. was simulated. 

Collaborators

Joung Lee (AASHTO)

Antonio Vives (Consulting Professor - Stanford University)

Cesar Queiroz (World Bank)

Janet Kavinoky (U.S. Chamber of Commerce)

Robert Puentes (Brookings Institute)

Daniel Delaurentis (Purdue University)

 

Ex-ante simulation and visualization of the impacts of financing policies 

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