The University of British Columbia

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Port Mann Bridge (Coquitlam, BC)

Glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

This glossary refers to terms as they are used in the “Analyzing Infrastructures for Disaster-Resilient Communities” research project.

 

C

Core Infrastructure Sector: In an analysis of the interdependencies between infrastructure sectors, core sectors are those found to have the most and strongest downstream dependencies. Distinct from peripheral infrastructure sectors.

In Chang and McDaniels’ 2009 working paper characterizing service infrastructure interdependencies in Greater Vancouver, core infrastructures were found to be electric power, land transportation and telecommunications, in that order.

Source: Chang, S., McDaniels, T., Fox, J., Dhariwal, R., Longstaff, H. Towards Disaster-Resilient Cities: "Characterizing Vulnerability of Infrastructure Systems". Working Paper.



Critical Infrastructures: The Government of Canada defines national critical infrastructure (NCI) as “physical and information technology facilities, networks, services and assets, which if disrupted or destroyed would have a serious impact on the health, safety, security or economic well-being of Canadians or the effective functioning of governments in Canada.”

Source: Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada. 2004. Government of Canada Position Paper on a National Strategy for Critical Infrastructure Protection, p. 5.


D

Downstream Interdependency: Please see upstream and downstream interdependencies.

E

Ex Ante: “Before an event.” In the context of disaster planning and mitigation, ex ante decisions or efforts are undertaken prior to the occurance of an extreme event to reduce the risk of loss.



Ex Post: “After an event.” In the context of disaster planning and mitigation, ex post decisions or actions are undertaken after an extreme event has already occurred in order to reduce impacts or enhance recovery.



H

HVAC:An acronym standing for “heating, ventilation and air conditioning.” HVAC is a subsystem of building support.



I

IFIs (Infrastructure Failure Interdependencies): “…failures in interdependent infrastructure systems that can be traced back to some initial infrastructure failure associated with an extreme event.”

Source: S.E. Chang, T.L. McDaniels, J. Mikawoz, and K. Peterson. 2006. “Infrastructure failure interactions in extreme events: the 1998 Ice Storm,” Natural Hazards, Vol. 41, No. 2, pp. 337-358 at 338).



Influence Diagram: Graphical representations of decision problems which are used for characterizing complex problems or models.

Source: McDaniels, T., Chang, S., Cole, D., Mikawoz, J,. Longstaff, H. "Fostering resilience to extreme events within infrastructure systems: Characterizing decision contexts for mitigation and adaptation." Global Environmental Change 18 (May 2008): 310-318.



P

Peripheral Infrastructure Sector: In an analysis of the interdependencies between infrastructure sectors, peripheral sectors are those found to have the least and weakest downstream dependencies. Distinct from core infrastructure sectors.

In Chang and McDaniels’ 2009 characterization of service infrastructure interdependencies in Greater Vancouver, examples of infrastructure sectors found to be peripheral were natural gas, wastewater and government.

Source: Chang, S., McDaniels, T., Fox, J., Dhariwal, R., Longstaff, H. Towards Disaster-Resilient Cities: "Characterizing Vulnerability of Infrastructure Systems". Working Paper.



R

Rapidity: One of the components of resilience, rapidity can be defined as a system’s capacity to meet priorities quickly following a shock, in order to avoid further disruption and losses. The speed with which a system recovers functioning following a stress reflects its rapidity.

Source: Bruneau, M., Chang, S.E., Eguchi, R.T., Lee, G.C., O’Rourke, T.D., Reinhorn, A.M., Shinozuka, M., Tierney, K., Wallace, W.A., von Winterfeldt, D., 2003. A framework to quantitatively assess and enhance the seismic resilience of communities. Earthquake Spectra 19 (4), 733–752.



Resilience: The resilience of a complex system can be defined as its capacity to absorb shocks while maintaining function and can be measured in reference to some level of system performance or function. As applied to infrastructure systems, the ability to absorb and recover from the shocks of extreme events such as natural disasters is a measure of resilience. Decisions and actions taken both before and after extreme events affect a system’s resilience.

Developed by Bruneau et al., the MCEER framework for measuring resilience identified robustness and rapidity as key properties of resilience.

Source: Bruneau, M., Chang, S.E., Eguchi, R.T., Lee, G.C., O’Rourke, T.D., Reinhorn, A.M., Shinozuka, M., Tierney, K., Wallace, W.A., von Winterfeldt, D., 2003. A framework to quantitatively assess and enhance the seismic resilience of communities. Earthquake Spectra 19 (4), 733–752.

Source: McDaniels, T., Chang, S., Cole, D., Mikawoz, J,. Longstaff, H. "Fostering resilience to extreme events within infrastructure systems: Characterizing decision contexts for mitigation and adaptation." Global Environmental Change 18 (May 2008): 310-318.



Robustness: One of the components of resilience, robustness can be defined as a system’s ability to withstand stress without losing functionality. The extent to which a system’s functions are maintained following an external shock reflects its robustness.

Source: McDaniels, T., Chang, S., Cole, D., Mikawoz, J,. Longstaff, H. "Fostering resilience to extreme events within infrastructure systems: Characterizing decision contexts for mitigation and adaptation." Global Environmental Change 18 (May 2008): 310-318.



U

Upstream and Downstream Interdependencies: The linked terms “downstream” and “upstream” conceptualize interdependencies between infrastructure sectors along a chain of influence.

“Downstream” interdependencies refer to how disruptions to a given infrastructure subsequently affect other sectors in turn. Conversely, “upstream” infrastructures are those on which a given infrastructure sector depends in order to function.

The illustration below illustrates upstream and downstream interdependencies between Electric Power, Land Transportation and Health infrastructure sectors.

Upstream-Downstream Interdependencies

Source: Chang, S., McDaniels, T., Fox, J., Dhariwal, R., Longstaff, H. Towards Disaster-Resilient Cities: "Characterizing Vulnerability of Infrastructure Systems". Working Paper.