The Infrastructure Nexus: From the Future of Infrastructures to the Infrastructures of the Future

By Nicolas J.A. Buchoud, Ross Douglas, Pascal Gastineau, Martin Koning, David Mangin, Philippe Poinsot, Jean François Silvain, and Hélène Soubelet


The Infrastructure Nexus policy-brief is a response to the call to re-couple economic growth and social progress, at the dawn of a global infrastructure tsunami. It highlights the lack of a definitive model of urban/metropolitan sustainability and researches on its impacts for global infrastructure and multilevel governance needs. It emphasizes that while infrastructures are forming a growingly boundless system, piecemeal approaches to developing urban sustainable agendas and projects are still prevailing, overlooking the systemic impacts of urbanisation on biodiversity and ecosystem services, which are also boundless. The first paper of a series that is to be continued, it complements the TF4 policy brief Building Resilient Infrastructure Systems, it advocates for a new generation of science-to-society and knowledge-to-policy connectivity to reposition infrastructure investments and value chains. In an era of rising resources limitations and urban growth, the paper outlines the underestimated role of research infrastructures in infrastructure for development policies and it proposes new priorities for a more comprehensive urban agenda within the G20, including biodiversity, with a specific focus on critical regions such as the Amazon and the Arctic.