MISTRAL: Multi-Scale Infrastructure Systems Analytics, is the second research programme of the UK Infrastructure Transitions Research Consortium (ITRC). The ITRC is a collaboration of seven universities and over 50 partners from infrastructure policy and practice.


In its first research programme, running from 2011 to 2016, the ITRC developed the world’s first national infrastructure system-of-systems model, NISMOD, which has been used to analyse long term investment strategies for energy, transport, digital communications, water, waste water and solid waste. Crucially, NISMOD also provides insights into the vulnerability of infrastructure networks and the risks of cascading failure, in order to inform investment in improving resilience.


MISTRAL builds on the first research programme to develop an integrated analytics capability to inform infrastructure decision-making across scales, from local to global. It is downscaling to higher resolution, in order to represent UK’s 25.7 million households and 5.2 million businesses. It is also upscaling: from the national perspective to incorporate global interconnections via telecommunications, transport and energy networks.


The Leeds team, comprising Andrew Smith, Nik Lomax and Mark Birkin, are tasked with producing high resolution population and household projections for the UK. These projections are being used by the infrastructure modelling teams within the ITRC to inform future demand for infrastructure and services.


MISTRAL is funded by a £5.3million grant from the Engineering and Physical Science Research Council and runs from 2016 to 2020. For more information see http://www.itrc.org.uk/.