Monsoon Academy 2019 – diving into urban resilience


Day 2

Day two of the 2019 Monsoon Academy focused on the complexity of vulnerability and resilience. A session on urban resilience frameworks discussed the drivers of resilience and vulnerability. The group explored different perspectives of vulnerability, as well as unconventional measures of resilience: how changes in water and air quality can be perceived through our senses. In coastal communities struggling with saltwater intrusion, resilience may, for example, taste like freshwater.

A hands-on exercise on resilience design and planning took participants to a hypothetical coastal area facing water scarcity and increasing salinity of groundwater resources. The exercise showed the strong influence of problem-framing on resilience planning.

An introduction to design thinking opened up a new avenue for project work. Based on previous exercises, the group developed use cases for their policy solutions. These user narratives support the analysis of resilience action impact, for example on different social groups. The participants had early on voiced their keen interest in learning about resilience actors. Who decides on resilience? This question was examined in detail through actor-stakeholder mapping of real cases from India, noting influence, knowledge exchange, and funding streams between actors.

The day ended with a reflection on the challenges that participants face in in their work. In specific examples, they located issues at appropriate scales, bringing structure into what may seem to be overwhelming barriers.

After a long day of learning and exchanging thoughts, a teaser for tomorrow's field visit to Chorao Island and the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary left the group excited for the last day of the 2019 Monsoon Academy.
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