Utility to the Nation: An Investment Strategy for our Inland Waterways

  • Bridget Wilby
  • Jordan Asberry
  • Juwan Griffith-James
  • Jason Houle
  • James Schreiner
Keywords: Utility to the Region and Nation, Monte Carlo Analysis, Decision Analysis


USACE Institute for Water Resources (IWR) supplies forward-looking research and analysis to the Civil Works program. IWR investigates navigation of inland waterways across the United States and collects data. The data produced by the Navigation Investment Model (NIM) is not extensively used as an institutionally accepted norm to facilitate evaluation and decision making of infrastructure work packages. This research will present a new method for assessing work packages using a Utility to the Region and Nation (U2RN) metric which complements existing heuristic approaches with predictive data analysis techniques. Application of the new methodology will show how prioritization of work packages would significantly change when using data, and when applying a Monte Carlo simulation to determine future states. This paper provides a framework for waterborne investment that can be applied to the entire inland waterway and deep-sea infrastructure.


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