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EBI green paper: what do governments need to know to plan infrastructure better?

31 May 2023

The world is changing rapidly, placing new demands on infrastructure systems.

Even before the pandemic, government departments responsible for economic and social infrastructure needed to invest more to deliver a sustainable future.

The challenge for government departments now is finding ways to balance the need for more sustainable infrastructure while also navigating new demands and changing needs.

This includes different patterns of behaviour and finding new sources of funding.

To ensure governments have what they need to plan better, we have produced updated guidance to help them plan and prioritise infrastructure more strategically.

This will help departments to create stable and sustainable infrastructure pipelines to attract funding.

What is needed to plan infrastructure better?

This green paper provides updated guidance for helping governments strategically plan and prioritise infrastructure in a changing world.

Guidance has been developed with a team of government, private sector, academia, and civil society experts. It includes:

  • Three-step process for setting up a strategic infrastructure plan
  • Supporting guidance to ensure governments can action the three-step process in any country
  • Self-reflection tool for helping government departments identify where to start and what initial work needs to be done to ensure they have the best chance of success.

We want to hear from you

We are seeking insights from all stakeholders involved in the strategic planning and prioritisation of infrastructure to provide input on what governments need to know to plan infrastructure better.


Three-step process

  • Question 1: Could you explain how your government department has applied this three-step process, and do you know of any other governments or government departments applying this well?
  • Question 2: Is there anything missing from the sub-steps? What examples can you give to show why these missing elements are important?

Enabling environment

  • Question 3: How does your country’s enabling environment (government stakeholder responsibilities, institutional and decision-making structures, and political dynamics) affect long-term planning, and why?
  • Question 4: Which three factors of the enabling environment are the strongest in your country’s current strategic planning process, and which three are weakest?
  • Question 5: What would you add to our list of critical factors for the enabling environment, and why?

Supporting factors

  • Question 6: What other topics or themes should be added to the supporting factors, and why?
  • Question 7: How much additional detail would government departments need on the supporting factors to make them actionable?
  • Question 8: Can you provide examples of good practice on the implementation of any of the key elements of the supporting factors? Where possible, please share supporting material or links.

Self-reflection assessment

  • Question 9: Do principles, questions and subjective categories provide a reasonable basis for building a self-reflection tool, and what would you change?
  • Question 10: Would you include any additional elements in our self-reflection tool, and why?

Written responses can be sent to [email protected].

This consultation runs until 26 July 2023.

EBI green paper: what do governments need to know to plan infrastructure better?

Content type: Policy

Last updated: 31/05/2023

Author: ICE policy team

  • Dr Kerry Bobbins, head of Enabling Better Infrastructure programme at ICE