As part of the World Economic Forum’s Infrastructure 4.0 Community, Francisco Pineda, Lecturer in Discipline and M.S. in Construction Administration Program Director, co-authored the white paper, "Achieving Better Outcomes with Technology and Systems Thinking."
The authors point out that while many see infrastructure as energy and power supply, some see it as hospitals, or roads and bridges. In fact, infrastructure is a system of systems that links the built environment, the natural world, and human experience. Intelligent investment can result in a more sustainable, equitable, and prosperous world, ultimately helping people and the planet flourish.
While technology has made huge strides in business and communications, infrastructure has had a hard time catching the wave of innovation due to the slow pace of the built environment. This is posing significant challenges as governments and organizations strive to rebuild following the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the late summer of 2020, the World Economic Forum 4.0 project community was formed to work across sectors and industries to devise a plan for best strategies that would create an intersection of technology and infrastructure. The mission: Reshape the world's approach to infrastructure, focusing on three thematic areas:
1. Creating new ecosystems
2. Creating new business models
3. Building skills and education
Francisco Pineda, FRICS, MBA, M.P.A., is the Program Director for Columbia University’s Master’s in Construction Administration program. He also serves as a U.S. Navy Reserves officer and, in 2018, was selected as a Presidential Leadership Scholar by the Clinton-GW Bush-HW Bush-LBJ Foundations. More recently, in his programmatic and faculty roles at Columbia University, Pineda co-founded the Columbia Construction Diversity Initiative, a research and development group focused on improving the supply chain, access, and training of MWBE (Minority, Women, Veteran, and Disabled) contractors in NYC.