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Westminster Research Fellow contributes to winning Rockefeller 100 Resilient Cities application

Planning, Housing and Urban Design 3 February 2015

The city of Enugu in Nigeria is the only Nigerian city among the 35 winners from across the world invited to join the 100 Resilient Cities Network.

The Rockefeller 100 Resilient Cities are cities which have demonstrated a commitment to building their own capacities to navigate the shocks and stresses of an increasingly complex 21st Century. Enugu beat over 330 applications from 94 countries to take its place among the Rockefeller Resilient City Challenge.

Ripin Kalra, a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Westminster’s Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, and the Max Lock Centre, was in the core team that prepared the city's application and the underlying analysis. He says “This is a real boost for the city administration as well as staff at the Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA) and the DFID Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility (NIAF) in managing urbanisation within such an important town in Sub-Saharan Africa. By addressing chronic stresses in infrastructure and energy it will directly improve the lives and resilience of thousands of street vendors and market traders who live and earn a living here. It also has the potential to boost the green economy of this town, enhancing key skills in the built environment.”

The panel of esteemed judges included; former President of Costa Rica José María Figueres, African Development Bank President Donald Kaberuka and President and CEO of the Asia Society Josette Sheeran. The organisers of the network said that Enugu was selected on the basis of its ability to “demonstrate a unique vision for resilience, a long-term commitment to cutting across levels of government and sectors of society, a special attention to the needs of the poor and vulnerable.”

The Max Lock Centre team has been working to support sustainable planning in developing countries including Nigeria for over 5 decades. Ripin currently teaches urban risk and resilience on the International Planning and Sustainable Development MA course led by Tony Lloyd-Jones at the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment at the University of Westminster.

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