Sustainable and resilient built infrastructure systems provide the basic needs of society and are essential for viability, health, and welfare. Civil, environmental, and ocean engineers play the most important role in seeking the means and technologies to enhance human life through infrastructure modernization by the provision of settlement, clean water, sanitation, and transport, amongst others.
The current fast rate of urbanization and industrialization has caused a rise in environmental issues, involving environmental mismanagement, which has been associated with unforeseen global catastrophes. The problems are further aggravated by the impacts of environmental degradation such as climate change, soil erosion, hurricanes, sea-level rise, depletion of water resources, groundwater pollution etc. These issues have triggered the demand of sustainability for the sake of future well-being. Furthermore, unexpected hazards such as pandemic, natural and man-made disasters urge the resilience of the built environment. Resilience is an approach to prepare, react and recover rapidly from disruptive events. The role of resilience in the built environment makes appropriate adjustments in the community and sustains the system during the critical conditions in order to minimize the social and/or economic impacts. Therefore, sustainability and resilience of the built environment have become concerns and studies of the world’s academicians and professionals using a multidisciplinary approach in infrastructure development. Relevant researches include not only hard infrastructure but also soft infrastructure aspects such as regulation, institution, and policy development framework.
In many developing countries, including Indonesia, the lack of infrastructure has been the main obstacle to investment and development activities. Besides limited available fund, the acceleration of sustainable and resilient infrastructure development still has to face the challenges of, among others, knowledge, human resource management, best practices, and capacity development. On the other hand, developing countries generally possess abundant local natural resources, sufficient carrying capacity, and local wisdom. Therefore, developing countries should reflect on the past and understand the current situation to design and prepare better, sustainable and resilient infrastructure development in the future.
In order to meet these multifaceted challenges, not only proper planning, design, implementation and verification exercises, but also clear policy and strategy direction of sustainable and resilient infrastructure development are required, via an integrated, multidisciplinary and holistic approach. The global momentum for sustainable development and resilience of the built environment must now lead to practical applications of the engineering and science of sustainability – an optimization – which allows comprehensive planning with maximum attention on sustainability and resilience aspects.