Date of Graduation

8-2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering (PhD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Industrial Engineering

Advisor

Edward A. Pohl

Committee Member

Scott J. Mason

Second Committee Member

Russell D. Meller

Third Committee Member

Chase E. Rainwater

Abstract

Recent events such as the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan have revealed the vulnerability of networks such as supply chains to disruptive events. In particular, it has become apparent that the failure of a few elements of an infrastructure system can cause a system-wide disruption. Thus, it is important to learn more about which elements of infrastructure systems are most critical and how to protect an infrastructure system from the effects of a disruption. This dissertation seeks to enhance the understanding of how to design and protect networked infrastructure systems from disruptions by developing new mathematical models and solution techniques and using them to help decision-makers by discovering new decision-making insights.

Several gaps exist in the body of knowledge concerning how to design and protect networks that are subject to disruptions. First, there is a lack of insights on how to make equitable decisions related to designing networks subject to disruptions. This is important in public-sector decision-making where it is important to generate solutions that are equitable across multiple stakeholders. Second, there is a lack of models that integrate system design and system protection decisions. These models are needed so that we can understand the benefit of integrating design and protection decisions. Finally, most of the literature makes several key assumptions: 1) protection of infrastructure elements is perfect, 2) an element is either fully protected or fully unprotected, and 3) after a disruption facilities are either completely operational or completely failed. While these may be reasonable assumptions in some contexts, there may exist contexts in which these assumptions are limiting. There are several difficulties with filling these gaps in the literature. This dissertation describes the discovery of mathematical formulations needed to fill these gaps as well as the identification of appropriate solution strategies.

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