Infrastructure

Mass Transit Infrastructure and Urban Health

Mass Transit Infrastructure and Urban Health
Mass Transit Infrastructure and Urban Health, Journal of Urban Health, Vol. 82 (1) 2005, pp. 21-32.

Zimmerman, R.
03/01/2005

Mass transit is a critical infrastructure of urban environments worldwide. The public uses it extensively, with roughly 9 billion mass transit trips occurring annually in the United States alone according to the U.S. Department of Transportation data. Its benefits per traveler include lower emissions of air pollutants and energy usage and high speeds and safety records relative to many other common modes of transportation that contribute to human health and safety. However, mass transit is vulnerable to intrusions that compromise its use and the realization of the important benefits it brings. These intrusions pertain to physical conditions, security, external environmental conditions, and equity. The state of the physical condition of transit facilities overall has been summarized in the low ratings the American Society of Civil Engineers gives to mass transit, and the large dollar estimates to maintain existing conditions as well as to bring on new improvements, which are, however, many times lower than investments estimated for roadways. Security has become a growing issue, and numerous incidents point to the potential for threats to security in the US. External environmental conditions, such as unexpected inundations of water and electric power outages also make transit vulnerable. Equity issues pose constraints on the use of transit by those who cannot access it. Transit has shown a remarkable ability to rebound after crises, most notably after the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center, due to a combination of design and operational features of the system. These experiences provide important lessons that must be captured to provide proactive approaches to managing and reducing the consequences of external factors that impinge negatively on transit.

Obesity, Courts, and the New Politics of Public Health

Obesity, Courts, and the New Politics of Public Health
Journal of Health Politics, Policy, & Law 2005, Volume 30 Issue 5.

Kersh, R.
01/01/2005

Health care politics are changing. They increasingly focus not on avowedly public projects (such as building the health care infrastructure) but on regulating private behavior. Examples include tobacco, obesity, abortion, drug abuse, the right to die, and even a patient's relationship with his or her managed care organization. Regulating private behavior introduces a distinctive policy process; it alters the way we introduce (or frame) political issues and shifts many important decisions from the legislatures to the courts. In this article, we illustrate the politics of private regulation by following a dramatic case, obesity, through the political process. We describe how obesity evolved from a private matter to a political issue. We then assess how different political institutions have responded and conclude that courts will continue to take the leading role.

The Redevelopment of Lower Manhattan: The Role of the City

The Redevelopment of Lower Manhattan: The Role of the City
The Contentious City: The Politics of Recovery in New York City edited by John Mollenkopf. Sage Foundation,

Moss, M.
01/01/2005

The attack on the World Trade Center reinforced a process of change in lower Manhattan that had been under way for at least the past fifty years. The public and private responses to the destruction wrought on September 11 have provided the funds, organizational capacity, and public commitment to do what a previous generation of municipal planners tried to accomplish, with only partial success: creating a mixed residential and office community in what was once New York City's dominant financial and business district. Federal aid to rebuild lower Manhattan has been the catalyst for modernizing and expanding its mass transit systems and facilities, providing low-cost financing for converting obsolete office buildings into housing, improving pedestrian movement, investing public funds in parks and cultural institutions, and subsidizing the creation of new public schools. This chapter examines the key public and private organizations that have shaped this redevelopment and the implications for the future of lower Manhattan and for office development in the rest of New York City.

Human Resources for Health: Overcoming the Crisis

Human Resources for Health: Overcoming the Crisis
The Lancet, Vol. 364, Issue 9449, 27 November 2004-3 December 2004, Pgs 1984-1990

Chen, L.C., Evans, T., Anand, S., Boufford, J.I., Brown, H., Chowdhury, M. & Michael, S.
11/01/2004

In this analysis of the global workforce, the Joint Learning Initiative—a consortium of more than 100 health leaders—proposes that mobilisation and strengthening of human resources for health, neglected yet critical, is central to combating health crises in some of the world's poorest countries and for building sustainable health systems in all countries. Nearly all countries are challenged by worker shortage, skill mix imbalance, maldistribution, negative work environment, and weak knowledge base. Especially in the poorest countries, the workforce is under assault by HIV/AIDS, out-migration, and inadequate investment. Effective country strategies should be backed by international reinforcement. Ultimately, the crisis in human resources is a shared problem requiring shared responsibility for cooperative action. Alliances for action are recommended to strengthen the performance of all existing actors while expanding space and energy for fresh actors.

A Comparison of Ground-Level Air Quality Data with New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Monitoring Stations Data in South Bronx, New York

A Comparison of Ground-Level Air Quality Data with New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Monitoring Stations Data in South Bronx, New York
Atmospheric Environment, Vol. 38, pp. 5295-5304.

Restrepo, C., Zimmerman, R., Thurston, G., Clemente, J., Gorczynski, J., Zhong, M., Blaustin, M. & Chen, L.C.
01/01/2004

The South Bronx is a low-income, minority community in New York City. It has one of the highest asthma rates in
the country, which community residents feel is related to poor air quality. Community residents also feel that the air quality data provided by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) through its network
of monitoring stations do not reflect the poor quality of the air they breathe. This is due to the fact that these
monitoring stations are located 15m above ground. In the year 2001 this project collected air quality data at three
locations in the study area. They were collected close to ground-level at a height of 4m by a mobile laboratory placed in a van as part of the South Bronx Environmental Health and Policy Study. This paper compares data collected by the project with data from DEC's monitoring stations in Bronx County during the same periods. The goal of the comparison is to gain a better understanding of differences in measured air quality concentrations at these different heights. Although there is good agreement in the data among DEC stations there are some important differences between ground-level measurements and DEC data. For PM2.5 the measured concentrations by the van were similar to those recorded by DEC stations. In the case of ozone, the concentrations recorded at ground level were similar or lower than those recorded by DEC stations. For NO2, however, the concentrations recorded at ground level were over twice as high as those recorded by DEC. In the case of SO2, ground level measurements were substantially higher in August but very similar in the other two periods. CO concentrations measured at ground-level tend to be 60-90% higher than those recorded by DEC monitoring stations. Despite these differences, van measurements of SO2 and CO concentrations were well below EPA standards.

A Conceptual Framework

A Conceptual Framework
Chapter 1 in R. Zimmerman, R. and T.A. Horan, eds. Digital Infrastructures: Enabling Civil and Environmental Systems through Information Technology. London, UK: Routledge,

Zimmerman, R. & Horan, T.A..
01/01/2004

In a world that continues to increase in size and complexity, the dependence on information technologies (IT) that drive our life support systems is growing rapidly. Few other technologies have spread as rapidly. This book addresses the pervasive influence that IT has had on infrastructure, namely transportation, water supply and wastewater management, energy, and telecommunications, and its users. This is especially timely in light of the growing need for critical policy, management and technological choices about the reliability and security of IT and infrastructure systems, and in particular what was deemed critical infrastructure by the President's Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection in 1997 (US Department of Commerce, Critical Infrastructure Assurance Office 1997) and again in 2003 by the White House (White House 2003).

Digital Infrastructures: Enabling Civil and Environmental Systems through Information Technology

Digital Infrastructures: Enabling Civil and Environmental Systems through Information Technology
Zimmerman, R. and T.A. Horan, eds. Digital Infrastructures: Enabling Civil and Environmental Systems through Information Technology. London, UK: Routledge,

Zimmerman, R. & Horan, T.A.
01/01/2004

An invisible network of digital technology systems underlies the highly visible networks of roads, waterways, satellites, and power-lines. Increasingly, these systems are becoming the "infrastructure's infrastructure," providing a crucial array of data on network demand, performance, reliability, and security. "Digital Infrastructures" presents an interdisciplinary analysis of the technological systems that envelop these networks. The book balances analyses of specific civil and environmental infrastructures with broader policy and management issues, including the challenges of using IT to manage these critical systems under crises conditions. "Digital Infrastructures" addresses not only the technological dimension but, importantly, how social, organizational and environmental forces affect how IT can be used to manage water, power, transport and telecommunication systems. The book is organized four sections. First, fundamental themes of policy, management, and technology are presented to frame the domain of digital infrastructures. Second, the way in which information technologies are applied in specific infrastructure sectors provides an in-depth assessment of what the advantages and disadvantages have been over time. Third, cross-cutting themes of economics, earth systems engineering, and international sustainability show how various systems perspectives approach some of the barriers to integrating information technology and infrastructure. Finally, the concluding section looks at some of the new directions and challenges being posed by issues such as security. "Digital Infrastructures" is the first integrated treatment of how IT technology is fundamentally affecting how critical infrastructures are managed. It is geared to provide the new infrastructure professional with state of the art concepts, methods, and examples for use in creating public policies, strategic plans, and new systems. It will be an essential book for upper level undergraduate and graduate courses in infrastructure management, critical infrastructure, environmental systems management, and management of IT systems.

Social and Environmental Dimensions of Cutting-Edge Infrastructures

Social and Environmental Dimensions of Cutting-Edge Infrastructures
in Moving People, Goods and Information in the 21st Century, edited by R. Hanley. UK: Routledge, pages 181-202.

Zimmerman, R.
01/01/2004

Globalization and technological innovation have changed the way people, goods, and information move through and about cities. To remain, or become, economically and environmentally sustainable, cities and their regions must adapt to these changes by creating cutting-edge infrastructures that integrate advanced technologies, communications, and multiple modes of transportation.

The book defines cutting-edge infrastructures, details their importance to cities and their regions, and addresses the obstacles - technical, jurisdictional, financial, and social - to creating those infrastructures. Additionally, it explores issues behind the creation of new infrastructures: their integrated, technical components, the decision making involved in their creation, and the equity and environmental questions they raise.

 

Sustaining Urban Networks: The Social Diffusion of Large Technical Systems

Sustaining Urban Networks: The Social Diffusion of Large Technical Systems
London, UK: Routledge,

Coutard, O., R. Hanley & Zimmerman, R., eds.
01/01/2004

Telecommunications, transportation, energy and water supply networks have gained crucial importance in the functioning of modern social systems over the past 100 to 150 years. Sustaining Urban Networks studies the development of these networks and the economic, social and environmental issues associated with it.

Taking sustainability in its triple economic, environmental and social dimensions, contributors such as Bernard Barraque and Olivier Coutard take stock of previous research on large technical systems and discuss sustainability from three main perspectives: uses, cities, rules/institutions.

Pages

Subscribe to Infrastructure