Expertise and approach

The successful transition toward sustainable cities requires radical changes in the ways we design, build, operate, finance, govern and use our infrastructures.

Infrastructures and the systems

Infrastructures provide crucial services to society, such as transport, energy, drinking water provision, waste-water removal and purification, waste disposal, and communication. With an urgent need for transformations of current systems towards realising sustainable societies, the long standing and often invisible infrastructures also demand structural improvements. However, looking at the long lifetimes and rigidity in the systems, these infrastructural services are slow to change, contributing to the overall inertia, demanding more fundamental changes.

Infrasystems and related actors (Loorbach, Frantzeskaki, & Thissen, 2010)

Infrastructures are generally referred to as stand-alone physical components, such as  power plants, waste-water processing plants, servers in ICT networks, powerlines, gas pipelines etc. However, they are a combination of not only the physical components but also the organisational and institutional structures that provide the function together. These often invisible systems comprise of the actors, technology, regulative frameworks, an market structures that support the delivery of the infrastructural services. These systems are also referred to as infrasystems, which are considered as socio-technological systems mostly characterised by multi-actor (social) network complexity (Loorbach, Frantzeskaki, & Thissen, 2010).

Transformative approaches