Athens and Thessaloniki have both been selected to join 100 Resilient Cities – a programme 'pioneered' by the Rockefeller Foundation to promote resilience in urban areas to challenges and potential disasters.
The initiative was launched 18 months ago with the selection of the first 32 cities to participate. Today the second group of 35 cities around the world to join the network were announced, with the candidacies of Thessaloniki and Athens both proving successful. In total 331 cities had applied to join the programme.
The organizers write:
“Each city was asked to present a clear and compelling description of their major resilience challenges, how they are approaching and planning for resilience to decrease vulnerabilities, and how they plan to partner with us.”
“It wasn’t easy to choose only 35 – we had so many passionate, vibrant entries, hundreds of compelling and inspiring conversations with incredible mayors in applicant cities, and hours of intense internal debate.”
Cities in the 100RC network are provided with the resources necessary to develop a roadmap to resilience along four main pathways:
- Financial and logistical guidance for establishing an innovative new position in city government, a Chief Resilience Officer, who will lead the city’s resilience efforts;
- Expert support for development of a robust resilience strategy;
- Access to solutions, service providers, and partners from the private, public and NGO sectors who can help them develop and implement their resilience strategies; and
- Membership of a global network of member cities who can learn from and help each other."
Among the ‘resiliences challenges’ that both Athens and Thessaloniki will seek to address are: earthquakes, economic shifts, heat waves, high unemployment and riot or civil unrests.
The Athens mayor, Giorgos Kaminis took part in an event today co-organized with the Economist to mark Athens’s successful candidacy.
Kaminis said, “We worked with all of our resources to secure social cohesion, but now we seek roads of sustainable development and economic regeneration.”