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Data for Urban Resilience: The need for inclusive approaches towards city-wide resilience

6 speakers

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While cities should be centres of opportunity, innovation, and growth, too often it is slum dwellers that bear the brunt of environmental, economic and political impacts. Cities need resilient systems that can withstand these shocks and stresses, particularly when measured through the eyes of the urban poor.
Data and information on risk is the foundation of effective resilience approaches. But existing ways of acquiring and analysing data tend to be static, arduous, and expensive. Therefore decentralised data and information that emanates from those most at risk is essential for dealing with upheaval.This could entail the use of “big data” collected from mobile-phones and other cost-effective information and communication devices, or insights from ground-up “self-enumeration exercises” undertaken by informal settlement residents themselves. Another area is “earth observation data” (that is increasingly rich and easily available and a closer look is needed on ways of integrating these for slum upgrading and risk assessment.This session led by Cities Alliance and the International Institue for Environment and Development will explore a range of new data approaches that are useful for tackling multiple interacting shocks and stresses that cities face. After introducing challenges with current data acquisition and analysis approaches, the session will ask four experts to give lightning talks on their approaches. The session will then transition into ‘virtual sandboxes’ aimed at exploring each approach in detail. A concluding plenary discussion will work towards generating a consensus on the need for embracing dynamic and decentralised approaches for acquiring and analysing data."