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Review of studies on risk factors in critical infrastructure projects from 2011 to 2023

M.K.S. Al-Mhdawi (School of Computing, Engineering and Digital Technologies, Teesside University, Middlesbrough, UK) (Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland)
Alan O'connor (Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland)
Abroon Qazi ( School of Business Administration, American University of Sharjah, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates)
Farzad Rahimian (School of Computing, Engineering and Digital Technologies, Teesside University, Middlesbrough, UK)
Nicholas Dacre (Southampton Business School, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK)

Smart and Sustainable Built Environment

ISSN: 2046-6099

Article publication date: 16 February 2024

294

Abstract

Purpose

This research aims to systematically review studies on significant risks for Critical Infrastructure Projects (CIPs) from selected top-tier academic journals from 2011 to 2023.

Design/methodology/approach

In this research, a three-step systematic literature review methodology was employed to analyse 55 selected articles on Critical Infrastructure Risks (CIRs) from well-regarded and relevant academic journals published from 2011 to 2023.

Findings

The findings highlight a growing research focus on CIRs from 2011 to 2023. A total of 128 risks were identified and grouped into ten distinct categories: construction, cultural, environmental, financial, legal, management, market, political, safety and technical risks. In addition, literature reviews combined with questionnaire surveys were more frequently used to identify CIRs than any other method. Moreover, oil and gas projects were the subjects most often explored in the reviewed papers. Furthermore, it was observed that publications from Iran, the USA and China dominated CIRs research, making significant contributions, accounting for 49.65% of the analysed articles.

Research limitations/implications

This research specifically focuses on five types of CIPs (i.e. roadways, bridges, water supply systems, dams and oil and gas projects). Other CIPs like cyber-physical systems or electric power systems, were not considered in this research.

Practical implications

Governments and contracting firms can benefit from the findings of this study by understanding the significant risks associated with the execution of CIPs, irrespective of the nation, industry or type of project. The results of this investigation can offer construction professionals valuable insights to formulate and implement risk response plans in the early stages of a project.

Originality/value

As a novel literature review related to CIRs, it lays the groundwork for future research and deepens the understanding of the multi-faceted effects of these risks, as well as sets practical response strategies.

Keywords

Citation

Al-Mhdawi, M.K.S., O'connor, A., Qazi, A., Rahimian, F. and Dacre, N. (2024), "Review of studies on risk factors in critical infrastructure projects from 2011 to 2023", Smart and Sustainable Built Environment, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/SASBE-09-2023-0285

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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