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Urban Resilience: Fletcher, Fisher, Maki


Join Ed and Beck as they talk about how disasters effect cities and how good planning can help cities prepare for the unexpected.

Join Ed and Beck as they talk to Roland Fletcher, Peter Fisher and Nario Maki about making cities more resilient and responsive to change.


Resilience. Resilience consists of a reduced likelihood of damage and failures to critical infrastructure, systems and components; lowered consequences in terms of fatalities, physical damage and economic and social impacts; and reduced time for restoration to pre-disaster levels. Resilience should further enable an infrastructure to withstand a recurrence of the event or multiple but different events . Its dynamics are conveyed in the figure below, with gradual but skillful restoration as repairs and refits bring systems back to pre-disaster conditions if not better.  

 MCEER (2008) has constructed a methodological framework around the concept of resilience in the adjoining box.  

 Concept of disaster resilience considers four fundamental properties:

 Robustness – strength, or the ability of elements, systems, and other units of analysis to  withstand a given level of stress or demand without suffering degradation or loss of function;

 Redundancy – the extent to which elements, systems, or other units of analysis exist that are substitutable, i.e., capable of satisfying functional requirements in the event of disruption, degradation, or loss of function;

 Resourcefulness – the capacity to identify problems, establish priorities, and mobilize resources when conditions exist that threaten to disrupt some element, system, or other established priorities and achieve goals

 Rapidity – the capacity to meet priorities and achieve goals in a timely manner in order to contain losses and avoid future disruption

 This framework includes four Dimensions of Resilience.

 Technical – the ability of physical systems (including all interconnected components) to perform to acceptable/desired levels when subject to disaster;

Organizational – the capacity of organizations - especially those managing critical facilities and disaster-related functions - to make decisions and take actions that contribute to resilience;

Social – consisting of measures specifically designed to lessen the extent to which disaster-stricken communities and governmental jurisdictions suffer negative consequences due to loss of critical services due to disaster; and

Economic – the capacity to reduce both direct and indirect economic losses resulting from disasters.

Thus, resilience objectives should result in specific tasks that improve performance in each of these dimensions, thereby lessening negative impacts on communities.


Source: MCEER

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