The next 37 member cities welcomed into the 100 Resilient Cities network (100RC) have been announced. Among them are Manchester and Belfast, helping the UK become the second most represented country on the list. The global network, pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation, encourages and helps cities implement management strategies for long and short-term problems including climate change and urbanisation.
Together with a prominent group of mayors from around the world, The Rockefeller Foundation President Dr. Judith Rodin and 100RC President Michael Berkowitz announced the newest cities to join the $164 million (USD) global initiative at joint events in Nairobi, Kenya and Washington, DC yesterday.
Beyond the UK, this new cohort spans five continents and fulfils the organisation’s founding commitment to build a network of 100 cities. Through three challenge processes since its inception in 2013, 100RC has received over 1,000 applications to join its network, including 325 in this most recent challenge.
Michael Berkowitz, President of 100 Resilient Cities, said: “Since 100RC’s founding in 2013, we have seen the resilience movement grow from a bold idea into a burgeoning fixture of local governments all over the world.
“We are proud today to celebrate the fulfilment of our initial commitment to reach 100 cities – but the real work lies ahead. The threshold of success for 100RC will not solely be progress within our network of 100 cities. Instead, it will be the ability for solutions to scale, and for all cities around the world to build off of the innovative work leveraged by these 100 Resilient Cities through implementation of their Resilience Strategies.”
Apart from the US, the UK is now the second most represented country in the 100RC network. Post-conflict Belfast is using modern management and community and culture building to re-emerge as a progressive UK hub. The 100RC partnership will help rapidly accelerate this development, with resilience as the central theme—making Belfast an exciting test bed to implement technically sophisticated, integrated resilience projects and programmes.
In addition to managing challenges from rain flooding, Manchester is working to regain economic profitability after the recession. Support from 100RC will enable Manchester to re-emerge and help its people to become more resilient and self-reliant through education and qualifications, responding to market demand and increasing productivity levels.
As members of the 100RC Network, cities receive grant funding to hire a Chief Resilience Officer (CRO), an innovative new position within municipal government to work directly with city leaders in developing a city Resilience Strategy. The strategy, designed with support from 100RC, helps cities plan for more integrated solutions to the challenges posed from globalisation, urbanisation, and climate change – including important social and economic impacts.
The 100RC Network provides member cities with greater than $200 million (USD) in direct support from the 100RC Platform of Partners, which provides critical tools, services, and technical assistance from organisations like Swiss Re, Microsoft, the World Bank, and the International Rescue Committee. And cities in the 100RC Network are connected through a peer-to-peer network, leading to ground-breaking cross-city partnerships and solutions.
Dr. Judith Rodin, President of The Rockefeller Foundation said: “The 100 Resilient Cities Network is showing the global community a new way of coping with shared, complex challenges – building urban resilience.
“Incorporating resilience planning and principles not only prepares cities for disasters and long-term threats, but also improves everyday living standards for all members of an urban community. The geographical, political, and cultural diversity in the now-complete 100RC network demonstrates that when it comes to dealing with this century’s toughest challenges, resilience planning is essential.”
100RC selected cities based on each city’s demonstrated commitment to building resilience in the face of the complex, multiform challenges of the 21st century – along with strong mayoral leadership and commitment to the initiative. 100RC’s program empowers cities to design, implement, and manage proactive solutions to the challenges posed by urbanisation, globalisation, and climate change, including short-term shocks like natural disasters, and long-term stresses like sea level rise and cybersecurity vulnerabilities.
A list of the full 100RC network is available here.