Making Cities Resilient:
My City is Getting Ready
Steering Committee

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)

IFRC is the world's largest humanitarian organization, providing assistance without discrimination as to nationality, race, religious beliefs, class or political opinions. Its mission is to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity. Often, these are victims of natural disasters, poverty brought about by socio-economic crises, refugees, and victims of health emergencies.

Disaster Reduction Goal

The sharp increase in the number of natural disasters worldwide in recent years has prompted IFRC to devote more attention to disaster preparedness activities. These aim to make National Societies and communities more aware of the risks they face, how to reduce their vulnerability, and how to cope when disaster strikes.

Making Cities Resilient Campaign Activities

IFRC is using a Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment Tool in rural areas, which will be extended to urban areas in the future as recommended in essential number 3 of the campaign. IFRC promotes cooperation between Red Cross societies and municipalities expanding the 10 Essentials message from the campaign.

United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT)

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-HABITAT, is the United Nations agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all. The main documents outlining the mandate of the organization are the Vancouver Declaration on Human Settlements, Habitat Agenda, Istanbul Declaration on Human Settlements, the Declaration on Cities and Other Human Settlements in the New Millennium, and Resolution 56/206.

Disaster Reduction Goal

UN-HABITAT’s main goals related to disaster risk reduction:

  • Increasing investment in disaster risk reduction – integrating priorities from visible and short-term development projects with long term potential threats and risks;
  • Addressing the root causes of disasters. Inadequate development practice increases the vulnerability of residents of communities, towns and cities; therefore, pre-disaster risk reduction needs to be integrated in all development planning;
  • Making cities safer places to live by incorporating vulnerability reduction and disaster management into on-going national and local development and poverty reduction plans;
  • Building a culture of prevention through a cross sectoral, multi-dimensional approach, integrating participatory analysis of risk, implementation of DRR programmes, and development of policy and legal frameworks with all stakeholders, including civil society, private sector, local, national and international government, in a gendered and comprehensive process.

European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection DG (ECHO)

The mandate of the European Commission Directorate General for Humanitarian aid and Civil Protection (ECHO) encompasses humanitarian assistance and civil protection, the two main instruments at the European Union's disposal to ensure rapid and effective delivery of EU relief assistance to people faced with the immediate consequences of disasters.

DG ECHO provides humanitarian aid to the most vulnerable victims of disasters in their immediate aftermath and also in cases of complex and protracted crisis situations

DG ECHO's humanitarian assistance is based on the principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence, is implemented in partnership with international organisations and humanitarian NGOs and based on solid needs assessment.

DG ECHO strongly supports the central and overall coordinating role of the United Nations in promoting a coherent international response to humanitarian crises and helps to make the EU's voice heard in international fora on humanitarian aid. In order to ensure the lasting impact of relief assistance on populations in countries affected by crisis, DG ECHO develops and implements policy frameworks aimed at maximising impact and results, including as regards coherent transition strategies towards sustained development.

Making Cities Resilient Campaign Activities

- Support the Making Cities Resilient Campaign through activities related to the UNDRR Capacity Building project in 2010-2011: Resilient Cities Campaign website, Development of the Local Government Self Assessment Tool
- Support the Making Cities Resilient Campaign, previous campaigns and the One Million Safe School and Hospitals initiative through several DIPECHO action plans in different regions (e.g. Asia, South Americas, Central America, etc)

The Rockefeller Foundation

For more than 100 years, The Rockefeller Foundation’s mission has been to promote the well-­‐being of humanity throughout the world. Today, The Rockefeller Foundation pursues this mission through dual goals: advancing inclusive economies that expand opportunities for more broadly shared prosperity, and building resilience by helping people, communities and institutions prepare for, withstand, and emerge stronger from acute shocks and chronic stresses. To achieve these goals, The Rockefeller Foundation works at the intersection of four focus areas – advance health, revalue ecosystems, secure livelihoods, and transform cities – to address the root causes of emerging challenges and create systemic change. Together with partners and grantees, The Rockefeller Foundation strives to catalyze and scale transformative innovations, create unlikely partnerships that span sectors, and take risks others cannot – or will not.

The Rockefeller Foundation seeks to identify and attack at their source the underlying causes of human suffering. The Foundation pioneered the frontier of global philanthropy and continues to find and fund solutions to many of the world’s most intractable challenges.

ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability

ICLEI is the world’s leading network of 12 mega-cities, 100 super-cities and urban regions, 450 large cities, and 450 small and medium-sized cities and towns in 84 countries. ICLEI helps cities become sustainable, resilient, resource-efficient, low-carbon, and biodiverse; to develop a green urban economy with smart infrastructure; and ultimately, it’s all about a planet with healthy & happy communities.

Disaster Reduction Goal

Cities must be low-risk and resilient if they want to be sustainable: resilient to disaster, climate change, unforeseen events and economic shocks.

Policies and Programmes in DRR

Resilient City is one of ICLEI agendas focusing on helping cities to become more resilient to disaster, climate change, unforeseen events and economic shocks. Every year ICLEI organizes a Global Forum on Urban Resilience and Adaptation - Resilient Cities. Resilient Cities 2013 will take place from 31 May to 2 June 2013 in Bonn, Germany.

United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG)

United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) is the united voice and world advocate of democratic local self-government. It represents and defends the interests of local and regional governments on the world stage, regardless of the size of the communities they serve. UCLG’s major areas of policy include local democracy, climate change and sustainable development, Achievement of the Millennium Development Goals of the United Nations (MDG), local finance, urban development, urban risk reduction, city diplomacy for peace building.

Disaster Reduction Goal

The UCLG World Council in Istanbul in November 2008 adopted the position of local and regional governments on Disaster Risk Reduction. The document sets out the commitment of local and regional governments to implementing local risk reduction strategies and awareness-raising campaigns aimed at reducing the vulnerability of the most disadvantaged populations; and to participating in regional, national and international platforms.

Making Cities Resilient Campaign Activities

UCLG has been a partner in the Making Cities Resilient campaign since its set out and participated in the definition of the campaign strategy. In the context of the Campaign, UCLG serves a gateway to reach out to local governments and will facilitate city-to-city learning experiences on disaster risk reduction. UCLG hosted the first partnership meeting in Barcelona in 2009, and has organized different events in the “Africities 5” December 2009 with UNDRR and African Mayors; a workshop with Mayors from West Africa and Southern Africa. UCLG’s next big focus is on Rio+20, where their involvement is expected to revolve around four messages: UN governance; climate change; incorporation of culture as one of the pillars of sustainable development; and the Making Cities Resilient Campaign.

Overseas Development Institute (ODI)

ODI's mission is to inspire and inform policy and practice which lead to the reduction of poverty, the alleviation of suffering and the achievement of sustainable livelihoods in developing countries. It does this by locking together high-quality applied research, practical policy advice, and policy-focused dissemination and debate. It works with partners in the public and private sectors, in both developing and developed countries.

Disaster Reduction Goal

- Leadership and strategic programming among international agencies for disaster resilience and adaptation
- Adaptation and resilience-building in the context of economic and sector development
- Ensuring coherence in the Post-2015 Policy Landscape
- Shaping all-risks approaches to programming
- Effective finance for risk reduction and adaptation

Policies and Programmes in DRR

The last two years have seen ODI’s contribution to international debates on adaptation, disaster risk and resilience grow in stature, aided by diverse expertise that has allowed us to benefit from and shape the trends detailed above. ODI now has work programmes on national and local resilience building through effective risk management, including on links with fragility, security and peace building.

Asian Disaster Reduction and Response Network (ADRRN)

ADRRN was established in 2003 and MERCY Malaysia is its Secretariat. Currently it has 45 NGO members from Asia who work together through various channels including websites, training programs, exchange visits as well as join field projects. Its mission is to promote coordination, information sharing and collaboration among NGOs and other stakeholders for effective and efficient disaster reduction and response in the Asia-Pacific region.

Policies and Programmes in DRR

ADRRN members work closely with the National governments in various Asian countries to advocate about the issues of vulnerable communities.

Various members of the network work for various issues of DRR like school safety, Community Based Disaster Management etc. ADRRN also carries out various awareness campaign in the region to raise awareness about various issues of DRR.

ADRRN works on increasing accountability in DRR work through capacity building of various members.

ADRRN also carries out activities to build the capacity of members for effective response.

Other programmes include reducing the gap between knowledge and practice and advocacy through various community resilience survey in Asia-Pacific.

Earthquakes and Megacities Initiative (EMI)

EMI is an international non-profit scientific non-governmental organization dedicated to advancing urban disaster risk reduction knowledge, policy and practice. It serves as a catalyst for the delivery of scientific and technical knowledge to the end-users, focusing its efforts on developing capacity in megacities and other complex urban centers of the developing world where the effects of earthquakes and other hazards could be devastating to people, economy, culture, and environment.

Disaster Reduction Goal

- Enabling local authorities and local actors in mainstreaming DRR through a participatory scientific approach that makes efficient use of existing resources
- Fostering a constructive sharing of knowledge and responsibility between all stakeholders to develop solutions that are locally owned and sustained
- Educating all stakeholders in understanding and interpreting the hazards and risks involved in their city and in developing options to reduce these risks
- Improving knowledge and capacity for risk assessment and disaster risk management.

Making Cities Resilient Campaign Activities

Since 2009, EMI has participated in shaping the Resilient Cities campaign, developing a strategy and following-up on progress. EMI has foster city to city cooperation, including a city-to-city exchange between Makati and Kathmandu that focuses on risk-sensitive land use planning and land-pooling.
EMI members are represented at the Campaign Advisory Panel. EMI’s active participation in creating the Local Government Self Assessment Tool and the Handbook for Mayors has been of great value. EMI encourages city-to-city cooperation through their regular activities.


AECOM is a global provider of professional technical and management support services to a broad range of markets, including transportation, facilities, environmental, energy, water and government. With approximately 45,000 employees around the world, AECOM is a leader in all of the key markets that it serves. AECOM provides a blend of global reach, local knowledge, innovation and technical excellence in delivering solutions that create, enhance and sustain the world's built, natural and social environments. AECOM is ranked by Ethisphere as one of the world’s most ethical companies for 2012. AECOM's operations focus on the following areas: Architecture, Building Engineering, Construction Services, Design Planning, Economics, Energy, Environment, Government, Mining, Oil Gas, Program Management, Program, Cost, Consultancy, Transportation, Water More experts. Thinking more innovatively. Designing more intelligently. Managing more productively. Partnering more powerfully.

AECOM is a member of the Disaster Risk Reduction - Private Sector Partnership (DRR-PSP), Private Sector Advisory Group (PSAG) and has committed to the 5 Essentials for Business in Disaster Risk Reduction. Together with IBM, AECOM compiled the Disaster Resilience Scorecard for Cities, which is based on UNDRR’s “Ten Essentials” and provides a set of assessments that will allow cities to understand how resilient they are to natural disasters.

IBM is an American multinational technology and consulting corporation, with headquarters in Armonk, New York. IBM manufactures and markets computer hardware, middleware and software, and offers infrastructure, hosting and consulting services in areas ranging from mainframe computers to nanotechnology. IBM has deep expertise in working with cities of all sizes, helping solve their toughest challenges. By bringing together big data, analytics, cloud, mobile and social computing, IBM his helping cities realize the potential to build more sustainable, resilient cities that are focused on the needs of citizens.

UNDRR, IBM and AECOM has created the ‘Disaster Resilience Scorecard’ which acts as a great reference tool for the members while they continue conducting the UNDRR’s “Making Cities Resilient” campaign.

Global Disaster Resilience Centre, University of Huddersfield, UK

The Global Disaster Resilience Centre (GDRC), University of Huddersfield, is committed to excellence in research, education and advocacy to improve the resilience of nations and communities to disasters. To realize the vision for a society that has the capacity to resist or change in order to reduce hazard vulnerability, and to continue functioning when subjected to a hazard event, GDRC undertake work that crosses traditional boundaries between academic disciplines and schools of thought, provide strategic advice and practical guidance based on rigorous and stakeholder informed research, and work with stakeholders at the global, national and local level.

The Centre's experise includes, for example, Disaster resilience from the perspective of the social/political, economic and physical sciences, and across national boundaries; Critical social, economic, and physical factors that enable a system, community or society potentially exposed to hazards to maintain an acceptable level of functioning and structure; Action-orientated metrics and underpinning data standards associated with resilience to natural hazards; New mechanisms to input planning and designing solutions that help create a resilient community; Understanding disaster risk, etc.

GDRC is part of the School of Art, Design and Architecture at the University of Huddersfield in the UK. In November 2013, the University of Huddersfield was awarded the Times Higher Education University of the Year. The University excels in enterprise and innovation and in 2012, was named the Times Higher Education Entrepreneurial University of the Year.

Barcelona City Council

For many years, the City Council of Barcelona (Spain) has been working on projects to reduce disaster risks, especially those related to infrastructures and social services. As a result of this effort and lessons learned from experiences in DRR, they have come up with new methodologies, best practices, financial resources and partnerships that can be comprehensively applied in all aspects of currently implemented DRR strategy, in order to address the city’s vulnerabilities. For the time being, the City Council of Barcelona owns and also plans to improve their knowledge, technology and capacity to take actions to reduce disaster risks, particularly from a broader point of view including projects on urban climate change adaptation and mitigation.

The City of Barcelona is also a participant and a role model in the Making Cities Resilient Campaign.

Municipality of Beirut

Beirut city is the the largest city in Lebanon, home to about 1.8 million inhabitants and contributes 75% to Lebanon’s economy. Beirut is one of the coastal cities highly vulnerable to severe earthquakes and associated tsunamis, due to its location on tectonic fault lines.

Against this background, the Municipality of Beirut acknowledges that the cost of not investing in DRR is tremendous not only locally but to the whole country. The Municipality therefore initiated a collaboration between national government and Beirut City in disaster risk management.

After joining the Making Resilient Campaign, they also work with other key stake-holders bodies (like Directorate General of Urbanism, syndicate of engineers, etc.) on the subject of DRR and partnered with some UN agencies to build disaster risk management strategy and action plans. The Municipality also develop the city’s capacity through networks with its partner/twin/sister cities such as Paris, Marseille, Istanbul, etc.

City Government of Makati

The Makati City Government (Philippines) long-term goal is to become the model for world-class local governance: providing for the well-being of its citizenry through delivery of the highest level of basic, social, and economic services with breakthrough technologies, sustainable financing, and competent, responsible and professional civil servants. Aside from the energy-efficient, electric-powered jeepney now plying villages in Makati, the city government also boasts of its solid waste management program and urban-greening project. Likewise, the Makati City Disaster Coordinating Council and the Makati City Environmental Protection Council were also created to address the need for disaster risk reduction programs and to achieve sustainable development.

The City Government of Makati has partnered with foreign governments and agencies and local institutions in order to expand awareness and knowledge on disaster resiliency not only in Metro Manila but in the country as well. In 2012, it hosted the last of a series of global study visits conducted by the World Bank-funded Global Facility for Disaster Risk Reduction (GFDRR) City-to-City Sharing Initiative (C2CSI) for Disaster Risk Reduction.

Municipality of San Francisco Camotes

The Municipality of San Francisco (Philippines) which is among the four municipalities that constitute the Camotes Group of Islands in Central Philippines, having the population of 47,357 people, has high vulnerability to multiple geo-hazards. Such hazards include typhoons, floods, landslide and strong monsoon winds. Moreover, communities are also vulnerable to fires as most houses are made of light materials. Given their high vulnerability to multiple hazards, the Municipality of San Francisco believes that making their island resilient to disaster is an important agenda for the Local Government. Building the culture of resiliency is the municipality’s priority. Key to building resilience is empowering people through providing the environment for communities to create local and practical solutions to achieve Disaster Risk Reduction and Management objectives.

Civil Defense of Rio de Janeiro

The Civil Defense of the Municipality of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) was created to articulate, coordinate and manage disaster reduction actions in the city. In addition to mobilizing the population to adopt preventive measures and rapid response in risk situations caused by natural phenomena. The Civil Defense is available to the public 24 hours a day, every day of the week including weekends and holidays, via phone. It provides the public a free channel for dissemination of warnings, news and risk prevention tips. The staff is composed of engineers and architects; agents, assistants and technicians of Civil Defense, and multidisciplinary professionals (including employees of the fire fighter teams and other municipal bodies). Its operation also depends on the support and partnership of Municipal civil defense bodies in the city of Rio de Janeiro.

European Commission - Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO)

The Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO) – European Commission (EC) is responsible for designing European development policy and delivering aid throughout the world. DG DEVCO delivers aid through a set of financial instruments with a focus on ensuring the quality of EU aid and its effectiveness. An active and proactive player in the development field, we promote good governance, human and economic development and tackle universal issues, such as fighting hunger and preserving natural resources. The UNDRR and EC DEVCO have collaborated in various projects, such as those supporting the integration of DRR in to governments’ investment planning. During DEVCO inception meetings for Intergovernmental Oceanic Commission (IOC) in 2013, Caribbean countries were invited to learn about highlighting DRR incorporation in public investment portfolio. Under DEVCO, many grants have been agreed to institutions to development research for the Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction (GAR 2015).