In business, infrastructure refers to underlying components of necessary elements that make business activity possible. Infrastructure is exemplified by such things as roadways and waterways; transportation; telecommunications; waste removal and processing; and power. Some definitions include human resources as part of infrastructure.
In contrast, superstructure refers to the overlaying construction of business activity supported by the infrastructure. The difference between the two is that the infrastructure forms the base or foundation of business activity, while the superstructure forms the facilities and operational procedures of business activity.
An infrastructure (the base or foundation upholding business activity) is that which of necessity must be gone through to achieve business activity, while a superstructure has optional and alternative route-ways for conducting business activity.
As an illustration, business needs the infrastructure components of communications connections in order to communicate with buyers and suppliers. It also needs the infrastructure component of transportation via road-, rail-, air- or waterways in order to deliver goods and receive resources. In the superstructure, a business can optionally employ telephone or Internet communications. Also in the superstructure—when more than one transportation infrastructural component is at hand—a business can optionally employ trucking, railway lines, airfreight or shipping for delivery of goods and receipt of resources.