Dr. David Bristow

Dr. David  Bristow
Associate Professor, Director of the Master of Engineering in Industrial Ecology program
Civil Engineering
Office: ECS 310

MASc (U of T), PhD (U of T), P.Eng.

Area of expertise

Resilient infrastructure, building and city systems, sustainable cities, integration of mitigation and adaptation, sustainability science

Research interests

I am interested in how the component parts of our infrastructure systems and cities interact, how we can make them more resilient to shocks and stresses and how we can make them more sustainable. I work on systems planning and decision making in cities engineering through advancement and integration of theory, methodology and practice in systems engineering and risk management via ecological, network, control system, optimization and thermodynamic approaches from first principles. I teach courses on resilient smart cities and sustainable engineering. My specific research areas of interest include:

Recovery planning for resilience

Can our assets, infrastructure systems and cities recover following shocks? Research on this important topic integrates investigation on cascading consequences with cutting edge models of recovery. The result is combined models we can use to assess the chance of recovery against all hazards.

Multi-objective decision making for resilience and sustainability

How do we design and plan our buildings, infrastructure systems and cities to deliver value, manage our risk and reduce our impacts? This interdisciplinary research examines the multiple objectives of multiple participants and stakeholders in the design and plans of engineered works and cities.

Climate Change Adaption and Mitigation

How do we need to change our buildings and cities to meet the challenge of climate change? How should we adapt? What emissions can we mitigate? As the IPCC recognizes, context specific approaches are required. This work looks at creating the tools and case studies to address these questions in different contexts.

Science of cities

How can we make the invisible visible? Can we understand the complex dynamics of cities and their systems? This work examines how we can minimize and respond to unintended consequences by understanding cities from first principles.