National University of Colombia
The issue of cities and resilience has grown increasingly more animated in urban policy and academic debates (Metzger and Robert, 2013). The term has been used to inform political rhetoric as well as a heuristic and operational tool and even as a concept within the social sciences. Progressively embedded into the wider torrential flow of academic and policy-oriented discussions on climate change and global environmental change, the term ‘resilient cities’ played, for instance, a central role in last year’s 7th World Urban Forum in Medellín, Colombia.
As the current understandings of resilience are inherited from natural and social science debates, it is one of the most used yet least contested terms. Over the last decade, the use of resilience has increased at an exponential basis in the literature on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction (DRR). In relation to cities, the shift is so evident that the term ‘resilient cities’ has largely replaced the now old-fashioned ‘sustainable cities’. As it happened with ‘sustainability’, the notion of ‘resilience’ exerts a sort of hegemonic dominance on those scientific discourses placed at, and originating from, the cutting-edge between natural and social sciences. Resilience permeates the way social and urban problems are framed almost everywhere.
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Edited by Adriana Allen, Andrea Lampis & Mark Swilling
One of the major challenges of urban development has been reconciling the way cities develop with the mounting evidence of resource depletion and the negative environmental impacts of predominantly urban-based modes of production and consumption. This book aims to re-politicize the relationship between urban development, sustainability and justice, and to explore the tensions emerging under real circumstances, as well as their potential for transformative change.
For some, cities are the root of all that is unsustainable, while for others cities provide unique opportunities for sustainability-oriented innovations that address equity and ecological challenges. This book is rooted in the latter category, but recognizes that if cities continue to evolve along current trajectories they will be where the large bulk of the most unsustainable and inequitable human activities are concentrated. By drawing on a range of case studies from both the global South and global North, this book is unique in its aim to develop an integrated social-ecological perspective on the challenge of sustainable urban development.
Through the interdisciplinary and original research of a new generation of urban researchers across the global South and North, this book addresses old debates in new ways and raises new questions about sustainable urban development. It will be of interest to researchers, city managers and a wide range of policy actors in government, civil society and the private sector.
An electronic version of this book is available via Open Access. It has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 3.0 license. Click here to order a hard copy.
The last IHDP publication has finally been published! The Summary for Decision-Makers: Coastal Zones and Urbanization, was written as a collaboration between UGEC and LOICZ (now Future Earth – Coasts). Authors include UGEC Executive Officer Corrie Griffith, UGEC SSC Member Darryn McEvoy, and UGEC Project Associates Andrea Lampis, Mark Pelling, and Debra Roberts. Click the cover image to download the PDF.