The overall goal for the Sustainable Infrastructure Planning Systems project was to create, document, and apply an advanced template for future integrated decision-making for sustainable infrastructure and policy in Saudi Arabia. The project developed a decision support system to address sustainability challenges in development and improve decision-making regarding current and future coupled infrastructure decisions. The three specific objectives of the SIPS research are : (1) to further explore infrastructure interactions with human and natural capital. (2) to conduct experiments with collaborative decision-making simulations/games and tools to better understand their impacts on sustainability decision-making. (3) to apply tools to problems of stakeholder interest.
The SIPS model integrates and enhances current modeling platforms to develop novel scenarios for infrastructure and other investments. Often overlooked but crucial to SIPS, are investments in power and water networks. The SIPS project uses the concept of wealth, also called inclusive or comprehensive wealth, to frame its analyses of the impact of infrastructure decisions on sustainability. Wealth is a measure of an economy’s productive base, and it is tightly related to the concept of intergenerational wellbeing. The overall goal of the SIPS research has been to create an integrated modeling and simulation environment that focuses on the coupled decisions in complex infrastructure systems to improve development targets that take into account the relationships between research types and domains. Using the “Comprehensive Wealth” structure as an integrating framework, the Sustainable Infrastructure Planning System (SIPS) model examines detailed energy and water strategies for Saudi Arabia to evaluate different alternatives for managing the supply and demand of these services over the long term.