Exploring Vulnerability and Interdependency of UK Infrastructure Using Key-Linkages Analysis

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Networks and Spatial Economics, 2016, 16 (3), pp. 865 - 892
Issue Date:
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© 2015, The Author(s). It has been argued the UK has experienced significant underinvestment in critical infrastructure over the last two decades. This in turn has resulted in infrastructure that is less capable of assisting the UK economy to grow. This article seeks to undertake an in-depth analysis of the inter-linkages and economic contributions from infrastructure within the UK. It explores the relationship between nine infrastructure sectors and how these sectors contribute to the rest of the UK economy using key-linkage analysis. Each infrastructure sector is shown to be unique in the way it interacts with other economic sectors and in the form of contribution it makes to the economy overall. Infrastructure is found to be a necessary and important part of economic development. The analysis finds that over the last 23 years there has been a decline in the relative economic contribution from infrastructure to UK GVA. Only two infrastructure sectors increased their relative contribution to GVA since 1992. These were the water transport sector and sewerage and sanitary services sector. Railway transport and gas distribution have had the largest relative decline in contribution towards UK GVA with relative contributions decreasing by over 50 % since 1992. The three most important infrastructure sectors contributing to UK GDP are land transport, electricity production and distribution and telecommunications respectively.
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