Building city-region resilience in Africa: Lessons from practice
Related ICLEI Pathway(s)
This thought piece collates the ideas that were shared during the session, with a view of contributing to guidance on resilience for practitioners working in African cities.
Current resilience discourse (within a complexity framework) emphasises the dynamic and emergent nature of systems such as African cities. There is general agreement among most academics within the resilience field that approaches to building resilience should account for complexity, which may necessitate shifts in the way we have historically implemented initiatives for resilience. However, actioning these ideas and incentives in the real world is challenging. During this session, representatives from initiatives that utilise innovative steps to understand and build resilience in African cities presented key thoughts and guidance based on their experiences. Following these presentations, participants broke away into groups to reflect on their own experiences while implementing this type of work, particularly on barriers and enablers related to building resilience in African cities. Each breakaway group then shared key reflections with the broader group. The presentations and group work set the scene for an interactive plenary discussion on the factors that have contributed to building or hindering success of initiatives that aim to build resilience in African cities.