Asia is going through an unprecedented wave of urbanization. Secondary and tertiary cities are seeing the most rapid changes in land-use and ownership, social structures, and values as peri-urban and agricultural land become part of metropolitan cityscapes. All the while, climate change is making many of these fast-growing cities more vulnerable to disasters.
Even mechanisms designed to reach the most marginalized are often subverted
The result is a growing cry among development policymakers to build urban “resilience.” Experience gained through implementation by Mercy Corps, the Institute for Social and Environmental Transition, and our partners across Asia in a variety of programs and projects, however, reveals pitfalls to rushing towards this objective too quickly.