Water and energy-based optimisation of a “MiniCity”: A system dynamics approach

E Suprun, G. de Oliveira, E. Bertone, O. Sahin, Daniela Ottmann, J. Baumeister

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Urban sprawls in Australia and several countries around the world have introduced a number of social, economic, and environmental issues for residents and urban planners, highlighting the need for new urban development concepts. In recent years, the concept of a vertical sprawl called "MiniCity" has been presented. The objective of a successful "MiniCity", compared to traditional high-rises, is to be as self-sufficient and self-contained as possible; whilst also minimising issues such as car dependency, loss of agricultural land and natural habitats, water and air pollution, and poorer health and wellbeing, which are common for residents in low-density, low-rise areas and developments. To date however, the viability of a MiniCity has yet to be properly addressed. Arguably, the predominant needs for a community are water, energy and food. In this research study, a System Dynamics model was developed to simulate supply and demand of the water and energy systems, as well as their interaction, for a hypothetical MiniCity located in South-East Queensland, Australia. The models were conceptualised based on expert knowledge, with data and equations collected from local Gold Coast sources and from the literature. Preliminary results show the complex, but expected, dynamics and interactions between the two systems, and their dependence to critical input parameters, such as climate data, roof area, number of floors, to name a few. Future work will focus on adding other critical modelling components such as food production and thus analyse the water-energy-food nexus. The final, validated model will allow the optimisation of critical MiniCity parameters and the identification of suitable locations that can maximise the socio-economic and environmental viability of the MiniCity.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMODSIM2019, 23rd International Congress on Modelling and Simulation. Modelling and Simulation Society of Australia and New Zealand, December 2019
EditorsS Elsawah
PublisherModelling and Simulation Society of Australia and New Zealand
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)978-0-9758400-9-2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019
Event23rd International Congress on Modelling and Simulation: Supporting evidence-based decision making: the role of modelling and simulation - The National Convention Centre, Canberra , Australia
Duration: 1 Dec 20196 Dec 2019
Conference number: 23th


Conference23rd International Congress on Modelling and Simulation
Abbreviated titleMODSIM2019
Internet address


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