Advances in photonics has led to remarkable growth in the development of optical sensors and components. These developments, combined with recent advances in optical materials, have helped convert bench-top-style optical instruments into compact sensors and sensor systems. These technologies are likely to have a significant impact on the quantitative analysis of the environment enabling deeper insights into materials performance in service. Ultimately, this will lead to better scheduling of infrastructure remediation and repair cycles, as well as the identification and quantification of species of concern in the environment, with potentially significantÂ benefits to population health. It is expected that the applications of advanced optical diagnostics to phenomenology across the domains of infrastructure and environment will address knowledge gaps in both theory and practice.