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Tools and Strategies to Address Uncertainties and Complexities of Infrastructure Design in Remote Northern Canadian Communities

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Title: Tools and Strategies to Address Uncertainties and Complexities of Infrastructure Design in Remote Northern Canadian Communities
Author: Gordon, Allan
Department: School of Engineering
Program: Engineering
Advisor: Farahbakhsh, Khosrow
Abstract: It is becoming increasingly evident that water and wastewater infrastructure in some northern communities is not appropriately designed to suit the local climatic, environmental, financial, or cultural context. This research developed and assessed new tools and strategies to capture the unique complexities of remote northern contexts and help engineers develop more situationally appropriate infrastructure planning and design processes and practices. Water infrastructure planning in Rigolet, Nunatsiavut, Canada was used as a case study. Grounded in systems thinking and Post-Normal Science principles, the methods included: identifying and characterizing stocks and flows within the system; conducting document reviews, semi-structured interviews with stakeholders, focus groups, and a community questionnaire; and identifying and characterizing constraints and criteria for northern infrastructure development. An infrastructure decision-making tool that captured technical, social and other local information was developed based on consultations with technical experts and community members to increase transparency, community trust and local control.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/8164
Date: 2014-06


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