Supporting critical infrastructure recovery following the North Island Extreme Weather events

GNS Science

Home > > Supporting critical infrastructure recovery following the North Island Extreme Weather events

Project Leader(s)
Charlotte Brown
Resilient Organisations
Team Leader Liam Wotherspoon
The University of Auckland
Contributing Organisations
University of Auckland

This project will combine data and lessons learned to provide an evidence-base to support critical infrastructure recovery decisions following the North Island extreme weather events.

The first part of this project will focus on the impact of the events on critical infrastructure across the North Island including networks such as transportation, energy, communications and water. This will include the damage locations, damage characteristics and the reinstatement times where applicable. As infrastructure supports the wellbeing and function of communities and businesses, an important aspect also considered is the level of service provided by each infrastructure to those across the affected regions. Alongside the critical infrastructure networks themselves, the services that these networks support need to be understood, including impact on financial services and logistics networks. A true picture of all these aspects requires a view across all critical infrastructure given the interconnected nature of these networks. This will be combined to develop an information base representing how critical infrastructure and the services they support performed across all affected regions and how level of service varied with time following these events.

The second part of the project will look to other large scale natural hazard events that have occurred internationally and how the recovery of critical infrastructure networks in the affected regions was managed and supported. This will include a meta-analysis of disaster recovery reviews from academic and grey literature. These will be reviewed to identify key lessons and learnings that can further support recovery decisions and processes. This will be complemented by a summation of best practice principles for evaluating infrastructure investment decisions from a resilience perspective to support recovery decision-making that is responsive to community needs and changing hazard landscapes.

As critical infrastructure supports all aspects of modern life, a robust understanding of performance and implications of damage is needed to inform current and future decision making. Infrastructure is complex and networks rely on each other to function through dependencies, such as a water supply pump stations’ and fibre-communication networks’ reliance on electricity to function. Critical infrastructure is also managed by multiple agencies across multiple regions, each with varying priorities and levels of cooperation. The research team involved in this project is well placed to work with and across these agencies to provide an overarching representation of these effects and support coordinated and complex recovery efforts.

At the end of the project a finalised information base of critical infrastructure performance will be released. Formal reporting related to both parts of the project will also be released in stages (through targeted bulletins) and combined into a single report at the culmination of the project.

This project will be delivered by a large multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional team that represents the leading researchers at the intersection of natural hazards and the built environment in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Resource Outputs from this project


Critical infrastructure recovery: Key lessons

Recovery lessons from the 2023 North Island Extreme Weather events, applicable to a range of end-users with various roles in critical infrastructure related recovery activities.

View Report

Building resilience through recovery: investment decision-making

Incorporating resilience considerations into disaster recovery and re-establishment of critical infrastructure.

View Report
Policy Briefing

Building resilience through recovery: Investment decision making

This brief outlines the decision making process in critical infrastructure repair and recovery and the considerations necessary to inform those decisions.

View Policy Briefing
Policy Briefing

Critical Infrastructure Recovery: Key Lessons

This brief provides advice for managing critical infrastructure recovery programmes including governance and operational management, recovery work sequencing and resourcing, information needs and engagement.

View Policy Briefing
Scroll to Top