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Due to the exceptional circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the learning activities, assessments and attendance requirements for this unit may be subject to late changes. Please refer to this unit outline regularly for up to date information and to notices in the unit’s Canvas site for any adjustments.

Unit of study_

CSYS5020: Interdependent Civil Systems

Our modern day civil infrastructure includes transport networks, telecommunications, power systems, financial infrastructure and emergency services, all of which are growing more and more interconnected. Moreover, the behaviour of the modern infrastructure is not dependent only upon the behaviour of its parts: complex civil systems (such as modern power grids), communication and transport systems, megaprojects, social and eco-systems, generate rich interactions among the individual components with interdependencies across systems. This interdependent behaviour brings about significant new challenges associated with the design and management of complex systems. Cascading power failures, traffic disruptions, epidemic outbreaks, chronic diseases, financial market crashes, and ecosystem collapses are typical manifestations of these challenges, affecting the stability of modern society and civil infrastructure. This unit will develop an understanding of how interdependent systems perform under stress, how to improve resilience and how best to mitigate the effects of various kinds of component failure or human error, by more accurate analysis of interdependent cascades of failures across system boundaries. The studied topics will include dynamical analysis of complex interdependent networks, local and global measures of network structure and evolution, cascading failures, as well as predictive measures of catastrophic failure in complex adaptive systems, and the tools that enable planning for resilient infrastructure. This unit will equip future professionals with sufficient expertise and technical know-how for the design of efficient prevention and intervention policies, and robust crisis forecasting and management. This unit will equip future professionals with sufficient expertise and technical know-how for the design of efficient prevention and intervention policies, and robust crisis forecasting and management.

Code CSYS5020
Academic unit Civil Engineering
Credit points 6
Prerequisites: ? None
Corequisites: ? None
Prohibitions: ? None

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. use elementary and intermediate programming skills to analyse, understand and simulate the dynamics of complex systems
  • LO2. apply topological analysis to a particular complex system to critically understand its structure
  • LO3. efficiently use existing software tools (e.g., Cityscape, Pajek ) in complex network analysis
  • LO4. develop scientific programming skills which can be applied in network analysis
  • LO5. develop understanding of the nature and dynamics of interdependent civil systems
  • LO6. understand and apply elementary game theory in networked civil systems to simulate their dynamics and cognitive decision making of the participating entities
  • LO7. understand, and successfully use in analysis, the concepts of percolation, cascading failures, robustness and related concepts within the context of interdependent systems
  • LO8. design basic network structures that satisfy structural and functional criteria within given domains and contexts.

Unit outlines

Unit outlines will be available 2 weeks before the first day of teaching for 1000-level and 5000-level units, or one week before the first day of teaching for all other units.

There are no unit outlines available online for previous years.