Understanding the resilience of interdependent infrastructure networks

Lead Research Organisation: University of Oxford
Department Name: Geography - SoGE


In rail infrastructure networks, there is a dearth of research, if any at all that studies cyber interdependencies on Britain's railway network which due to its legacy as being the world's oldest railway system (Hamilton-Ellis, 1968) will benefit from studies on how such systems maintain resilience in the face of advancing technology, increasing interconnectivities and diverse threats. This research study therefore seeks to explore this gap in research knowledge by developing a system of systems methodology for understanding interdependencies across digitally controlled infrastructure systems. It will provide new tools that will help in appraising the robustness, resourcefulness and rapidity of service restoration when subject to shocks and assist in resilience decision making and planning of alternative strategies. It will do this by answering the research questions below:

Research question 1: How can failure propagations across cyber interdependent national infrastructures be estimated?
Research question 2: How can knowledge of failure propagation across interdependent infrastructures be harnessed to inform better understanding of system recovery and in what way can
this help formulate resilience measures across these networks?
Objectives: Based on the research questions outlined above, the objectives for this research will be to:
1. Create a system-of-systems methodology for understanding the mechanism of failure propagations and resilience across interdependent infrastructure systems.
2. Explore an in-depth research understanding of the propagation of failure disruptions and resilience of digitally connected interdependent infrastructures systems. It will study how the increased proliferation of digital interconnectivities across energy and transport infrastructure systems influences the cascading of threats and how these networks build resilience to these threats.
3. Provide tools that will help to correctly estimate the socio-economic impact of the disruptions.
4. Develop novel tools for real time testing and analysis of alternative strategies during threats as well as implications of investment decisions to inform proper resilience planning and decision making".

This research falls under the ICT and Global Uncertainty themes.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/N509711/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2021
2117080 Studentship EP/N509711/1 01/10/2018 30/09/2021 Ohiowaobo Ilalokhoin