Co-sponsored by Global Metropolitan Studies, this Matrix team aspires to lay the foundations for a “Berkeley Infrastructure Initiative,” (BI2), which will bring together faculty and students with a shared interest in the planning, governance, finance, design, development, economics, and environmental effects of infrastructure. Sub-sectors of interest include transportation, housing, water, sanitation, information and communication technology, energy, school and community facilities, and public parks.
“New and expanded research is needed to guide public infrastructure policy, investment and delivery amidst changing domestic and international landscapes," the organizers explained in their proposal. "But widespread social benefit will only be realized if infrastructure investments are planned in a manner prioritizing equitable access and reducing externalities that place disproportionate burdens on already disadvantaged groups. Thus, objective, empirically-guided knowledge is needed on how to equitably provide and effectively deliver infrastructure services. Our team will incorporate a strong equity lens into our empirical work. Through this proposal, the Research Team will develop a landscape framing paper outlining the state of the field and research needs, convene a conference with leading scholars, develop a strategic plan to seek extramural and campus funding support, and actively disseminate our research and findings. Through these efforts, UC Berkeley will be well-positioned to have significant impact in scholarship and practice."
Image Credit: Potaihse, "Kwai Chung Road" – Creative Commons, via Flickr