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Category : Resilience

  • Asia Dialogue - Looking for the Weakest Link in Kathmandu

    Looking for the Weakest Link in Kathmandu

    Sarah Rooney and Nayan Pokhrel (Fixer)

    Laxman looks at a building in Kathmandu, Nepal, he isn’t concerned with the aesthetic proportions or the comfort it provides to its inhabitants; he is looking for weakness. He examines the walls to assess the quality of concrete or brickwork. He measures up load-bearing beams and columns to gauge their strength. He searches for cracks, patches of damp, or signs of subsidence. Ultimately, he is looking to see if the building will withstand a major earthquake. READ MORE

  • Asia Dialogue - Putting People Back Together Again

    Putting People Back Together Again

    Sarah Rooney and Nayan Pokhrel (Fixer)

    Dr. Rohendra is excited about his brand new orthopedic wing. “The orthopedic department will have its own dedicated operating theatre,” he says with relief. “Until now, we have been sharing the hospital’s main operating theatre and have had to schedule all our surgeries on a single day each week.” READ MORE

  • Asia Dialogue - Why secondary cities are well-placed to achieve disaster and climate change resilience

    Why secondary cities are well-placed to achieve disaster and climate change resilience

    Rowan Fraser

    Here are two important statistics from the UN:

    • Firstly, that 60 per cent of the urban area of 2030 has yet to be built;
    • Secondly, that in Asia, the majority of urban growth over the upcoming decades will take place in small and medium sized cities

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  • Asia Dialogue - The Grosvenor ranking of urban resilience

    The Grosvenor ranking of urban resilience

    Rowan Fraser

    Finally!  I’ve been waiting for this to happen for a while now and I must say its good to see it’s been done: a global ranking of the resilience of cities.

    There are indices quantifying and ranking cities for numerous other things: quality of life, attractiveness to tourists, air quality, sustainability and economic strength, to name but a few.   But until mid-April there was no ranking of urban resilience, despite mounting attention to the issue and increasingly vocal calls to tackle urban vulnerability.

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  • Asia Dialogue - Restoring lakes to benefit the ecosystem: The case of Mysore

    Restoring lakes to benefit the ecosystem: The case of Mysore

    Mukta Naik

    Late in the 1980s birding enthusiasts in the city of Mysore, located 140 kms southwest of India’s IT capital Bangalore, noticed a sickly green coating grow over the surface of the lakes they frequented. Awareness about the ill effects of pollution was growing and they began to worry about their city. Particularly, they worried about the wetlands and water bodies that they saw as critical habitats for wildlife and birds. They were pained by the increasing amount of raw sewage that was finding its way into these waters as the city grew. READ MORE

  • Asia Dialogue - Revision needed of stereotypes about women and climate change

    Revision needed of stereotypes about women and climate change

    Rowan Fraser

    ‘The problem with stereotypes,’ said novelist Chimamanda Adichie in a powerful TED talk, ‘is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete.’  This incompleteness is dangerous, according to Adichie, because it leads to one-sided views which deny complex realities.

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  • Asia Dialogue - Viewing resilience as a value proposition for urban competitiveness

    Viewing resilience as a value proposition for urban competitiveness

    Rowan Fraser

    There are many reasons to invest in a city. And by ‘invest’ I’m taking a wide view: this might be living, building, producing, working or, of course, actually investing capital.  If you go through the different indices which rank the world’s cities in terms of ‘investment attractiveness’ or ‘competitiveness’, factors such as accountability of local government, market size, access to maritime ports, infrastructure quality, average per capita income, air quality and access to green space come up often.  Resilience, on the other hand, does not.  But it should. READ MORE

  • Asia Dialogue - Backyard produce: Food for your tables. Cebu and Naga, Philippines

    Backyard produce: Food for your tables. Cebu and Naga, Philippines

    Rowan Fraser

    Having got used to thinking of the city as being all concrete, iron and burgers, I was surprised to discover a series of vegetable gardens in Manila recently.  Lodged on a south-facing hillside, out towards Eastwood City, below a flyover, beside a jeepie stand.  The first time I was running late, but the second time I stopped in and looked over the garden.  A boy darted in and picked a cucumber. READ MORE

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