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Center for Complex Engineering Systems (CCES)


Partner: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

OVERVIEW: The Center for Complex Engineering Systems (CCES) at KACST and MIT was created to improve our understanding of complex systems and to jointly conduct world-class research. This requires an unprecedented level of inter-disciplinary collaboration amongst scientists and engineers who study nature, technology and social phenomena at multiple scales. The center is collocated between KACST and MIT. At KACST the center is located in state of the art facilities in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia. At MIT the center is hosted by the Engineering Systems Division (ESD) giving it access to all five schools via dual and joint faculty appointments.


In this project, simulations for the complex systems of city infrastructures as a system of systems (networks) are being developed, simulating the behaviors of these systems and their interdependencies, and assisting stakeholders in predicting future scenarios. City Schema utilized a tangible interface (City Scope) and a simulation engine for analyzing the data of the urban, transportation, energy and the water systems of a community (City Analytics) to support collaborative city planning (City Collaborative).

In this project we developed a framework for analyzing the dynamics of cities by multiple aspects including transportation systems, city structures, human mobility, population growth and social behavior.  The framework analyzes each of these aspects in addition to the complex interactions between them to fully uncover the dynamics of cities as a complete system.

In this project, a methodology was developed to determine the sustainability of infrastructure such that the effects on the local, regional and international environment were accounted for. A software platform was developed that includes a mathematical model which forms the basis of a sustainability rating; as well as the development of the concept of inclusive wealth and its application to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

This project was developed as an integrated modeling environment that can be utilized to analyze the present situation in the labor market dynamics for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and predict future trends. This would enhance the capabilities of the Ministry of Labor in assessing how successful current and future labor market programs such as Nitaqat and Hafiz are in achieving the objectives of the Saudi Employment Strategy.

In this project, a plan for a strategic network of solar-powered desalination plants was developed with consideration to performance indicators, such as: sustainability, strategic security, and robustness of the system. The project included the development of plans to optimize the deployment of such a network in stages in different locations in Saudi Arabia.