Infrastructure for Resilience

Infrastructure describes the basic systems and structures that support markets, governance, communication, lifestyle, and every other aspect of society.  Infrastructure includes physical or “hard” infrastructure systems such as transportation, energy, water/ sanitation, and one that is often left out of the planning mix, ecological systems; as well as “soft” infrastructure systems – the less tangible systems such as laws, regulations, markets, research and education, etc. that ultimately affect the design, construction, management, and governance of these systems.  In an era experiencing profound change including rapid urbanization, changing climatic conditions, as well as shifting poles of power, the vulnerabilities of existing infrastructure systems are becoming more apparent.  Cities, often in partnership with private interests, are at the vanguard of an infrastructure revolution. Through rethinking systems, and their management and impacts, cities are leading the way towards a more resilient and sustainable future through infrastructure development that advances ecosystem services, energy efficiency and renewable resource use, enhanced and efficient water and sanitation systems, novel waste management strategies, as well as the governance, market, and management systems to support them. In this course, we will explore these infrastructure innovations and how professions are shifting to design, support, implement, and manage a new landscape.