PhD Dissertation: Integrating sustainability into road infrastructure development: A dead-end street or a promising road?

The background of this dissertation lies in attempts made to integrate sustainability into the planning of road infrastructure development. Better integration is necessary to ensure that the three pillars of sustainable development (i.e., the economic, social, and environmental pillars) and the intergenerational equity principle are also considered. The focus is on spatial planning because more action spaces are available early on in this process than later in the project lifecycle (i.e., construction and operation).

Indonesia was selected as a case study because it represents a typical case of a developing country with limited capacity for, and limited awareness among stakeholders of, integrated decision-making. The main research question of the research underlying this dissertation was: What features explain the successful or limited integration of sustainability into planning road infrastructure development, and what specific strategies can be revealed by this investigation into the particular case of Indonesia as a developing country?

The results show that from the content perspective, the integration is determined by the coherent use of indicators included in the practiced assessment. Second, from the context perspective, the case of Indonesia shows that it is necessary to improve the broader decision-making context (e.g., leadership, shared interests, and inclusive participation of stakeholders). Third, from the process perspective, the framing and reframing of missions/goals and the effective use of environmental impact assessment to reflect the problems and solutions are necessary. In conclusion, this dissertation proposes a dual pathway to successful integration: (1) the improvement of institutions for integrated decision-making in the long run and (2) the mapping of opportunities to balance environmental and economic interests through more inclusive decision-making. The role of planners and policymakers is to navigate between both pathways to strengthen the governance of road infrastructure planning toward sustainable development.

Start date and time
End date and time
Academiegebouw, Domplein 29
PhD candidate
Gede Suprayoga
Integrating sustainability into road infrastructure development: A dead-end street or a promising road?
PhD supervisor(s)
Prof. Dr. T.J.M. Spit
Dr. P.A. Witte