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Building urban climate resilience through community-driven approaches to development: Experiences from Asia

Diane Archer (Human Settlements Group, International Institute for Environment and Development, London, UK)

International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management

ISSN: 1756-8692

Article publication date: 21 November 2016

684

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore how the implementation of community-driven approaches to improve the living conditions of the urban poor can also have positive co-benefits for resilience to climate change, by addressing the underlying drivers of physical, social and economic vulnerability.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper applies a case study approach, drawing from the documented experiences of organised urban poor groups in Asian countries already actively participating in collective settlement upgrading, building networks and financial resources for further action.

Findings

The findings show that while certain actions might not be taken with climate change adaptation specifically in mind, these development activities also contribute to broader resilience to climate change, by reducing exposure to risk and addressing other drivers of vulnerability. The findings also show that partnerships between low income communities and other urban stakeholders, including local government, and innovative financial mechanisms managed by communities, can lead to scaled-up action to address development and adaptation deficits. This can lead the way for transformation in socio-political systems.

Practical implications

The approaches applied by organised urban poor groups in Asia show that community-level actions can make a positive contribution to building their resilience to climate change, and with local government support and partnership, it could lead to scaled-up actions, through a bottom-up approach to multi-level governance.

Originality/value

This paper considers how community-driven actions can build resilience to climate change, and it argues that adaptation and development should be considered together.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This paper was originally prepared for and presented at a workshop at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, and discussions during the session provided valuable insights. Any errors remaining are the author’s own.

Citation

Archer, D. (2016), "Building urban climate resilience through community-driven approaches to development: Experiences from Asia", International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, Vol. 8 No. 5, pp. 654-669. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCCSM-03-2014-0035

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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