A Socio-Technical Analysis of Interdependent Infrastructures Among the Built Environment, Energy, and Transportation Systems at the Navy Yard And the Philadelphia Metropolitan Region, USA
Social Science Research Network
This paper reports on a research initiative that explores the interdependencies of the system of systems -the built environment, energy, and transportation -related to the redevelopment of The Navy Yard in Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Metropolitan Region. The overarching goal of the project is a clearer understanding of the dynamics of multi-scale interactions and interdependencies of systems of sociotechnical systems that will be useful to system practitioners. The understanding and the
... bsequent planning and design of sociotechnical systems are "wicked" problems and one characteristic is there is no definitive formulation. One of the main findings or lessons learned of the work reported for the understanding of interdependencies of infrastructure is the identification of what are the problems or challenges because for wicked problems "[t]he formulation of the problem is the problem!" We find that systems practitioners have an overarching concern of a fragmented regional policy and decision making process. Four main themes of 1. Vulnerability of aging infrastructure, 2. Integration of emerging technology into existing infrastructure, 3. Lifestyle and value changes, and 4. Financial innovations were identified as challenges. Continuing research work explores three possible infrastructure projects for further study as well as the development of a high-level systems of systems model. The principle outcome is the initiation of a planning process so that the system practitioners will learn to better understand the connections among related sociotechnical systems and the constellation of problems they face not within their immediate scope of responsibility yet influences the operations of their systems.