Chapter 11 Building Local Government Resilience through City-to-City Cooperation

Climate and Disaster Resilience in Cities

ISBN: 978-0-85724-319-5, eISBN: 978-0-85724-320-1

ISSN: 2040-7262

Publication date: 30 March 2011


The latter half of the 20th century has seen the rise of local actors in the international milieu. Among these so-called local “internationals” (Alger, 1999) were local governments who have come to assert their role in various aspects of international development. Since the end of World War II, municipalities have actively forged partnerships with other localities in other countries,1 even to the point of challenging the foreign policies of their own countries in such thorny issues as the apartheid in South Africa, nuclear disarmament, human rights, and the Sandinista war in Nicaragua (Hobbs, 1994; Shuman, 1994; Fry, Radebaugh, & Soldatos, 1989). The importance of municipalities as global players has grown substantially over the years. At the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, among the major issues highlighted in the Agenda 21 was the need to devote “greater attention to issues of local government and municipal management” (UNEP, n.d., 5.3). It further pointed out that in order for cities, especially those plagued by severe sustainable development problems, to develop along a sustainable path, they should, among others, “participate in international ‘sustainable city networks’ to exchange experiences and mobilize national and international technical and financial support” (UNEP, n.d., 7.20.d) and “reinforce cooperation among themselves” (UNEP, n.d., 7.21). Four years later, at the UN-HABITAT II City Summit in Istanbul, cities were officially recognized by the United Nations as the “closest partners” of national governments for the implementation of the Habitat Agenda (UN-HABITAT, 2003). In 2005, as a demonstration of their commitment to work for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on the ground, over one thousand cities and local government associations issued and adopted the Local Government Millennium Declaration at the Millennium+5 Summit in Beijing (UCLG, 2010).


Irawati Tjandradewi, B. and Berse, K. (2011), "Chapter 11 Building Local Government Resilience through City-to-City Cooperation", Shaw, R. and Sharma, A. (Ed.) Climate and Disaster Resilience in Cities (Community, Environment and Disaster Risk Management, Vol. 6), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 203-224.

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