Date of Award

Summer 2011

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Engineering Management & Systems Engineering

Committee Director

Adrian Gheorghe

Committee Member

Resit Unal

Committee Member

Shannon Bowling

Committee Member

Sharon M. Jones


Infrastructure systems are vital to the functioning of our society and economy. However, these systems are increasingly complex and are more interdependent than ever, making them difficult to manage. In order to respond to increasing demand, environmental concerns, and natural and man-made threats, infrastructure systems have to adapt and transform. Traditional engineering design approaches and planning tools have proven to be inadequate when planning and managing these complex socio-technical system transitions. The design and implementation of next generation infrastructure systems require holistic methodologies, encompassing organizational and societal aspects in addition to technical factors. In order to do so, a serious gaming based risk assessment methodology is developed to assist infrastructure data elicitation and planning. The methodology combines the use of various models, commercial-off-the-shelf solutions and a gaming approach to aggregate the inputs of various subject matter experts (SMEs) to predict future system characteristics. The serious gaming based approach enables experts to obtain a thorough understanding of the complexity and interdependency of the system while offering a platform to experiment with various strategies and scenarios. In order to demonstrate its abilities, the methodology was applied to National Airspace System (NAS) overhaul and its transformation to Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). The implemented methodology yielded a comprehensive safety assessment and data generation mechanism, embracing the social and technical aspects of the NAS transformation for the next 15 years.