We are becoming increasingly dependent on a secure, uninterrupted and affordable supply of energy, water, transport, telecommunication and information services. However, outdated or inadequate infrastructure—and the resulting congestion, power outages, and lack of access to safe water and roads—is a global concern. Huge investments are needed, but how we can increase the effectiveness and efficiency of these investments? The challenge can be summarized as the factor 8 question: ‘Is it possible to imagine infrastructure systems that can meet the needs of twice today's population with half today's resources while providing twice the liveability?’ This course focuses on 4 interrelated ways to do so: Flexible Infrastructures: Why do we have to increase the flexibility of our physical infrastructure? How do we do so? What are the main challenges and ongoing developments? This part of the course deals with Strategic Asset Management. ICT and performance of infrastructures: How can ICT improve the performance of infrastructures? What are the principles for creating flexible information architectures to meet the challenges of the future? What are the new risks and vulnerabilities and how do we cope with them? Smart Grids: What are the concepts and principles of Smart Grids in the context of the evolution of future power systems, particularly those containing significant decentralized generation capacity? What is the impact of integrating renewable energy resources into the grid? Eco-cities: What does the concept of an eco-city mean? How does it relate to smart cities or resilient cities? We will outline the various types of urban development and modernization concepts, define the essentials of each of them, and examine the importance and practical implications of ecological modernization of cities. All weeks will include a number of case studies. During the course we will encourage you to discuss the case studies with your fellow students.