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Many challenges facing urban and built environment researchers stem from the complexity and diversity of the urban data landscape.

This landscape is typified by multiple independent organizations each holding a variety of heterogeneous data sets of relevance to the urban community. Furthermore, urban research itself is diverse and multi-faceted covering areas as disparate as health, population demographics, logistics, energy and water usage, through to socio-economic indicators associated with communities.

The Australian Urban Research Infrastructure Network (AURIN) project is tasked with developing an e-Infrastructure through which a range of urban and built environment research areas will be supported. This will be achieved through development and support of a common (underpinning) e- Infrastructure.

This paper outlines the requirements and design principles of the e-Infrastructure and how it aims to provide seamless, secure access to diverse, distributed data sets and tools of relevance to the urban research community. We also describe the initial case studies and their implementation that are currently shaping this e-Infrastructure.

This paper was first presented at the IEEE e-Science Conference, Stockholm, Sweden, Dec. 2011

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