Call for contributions to urban resilience trade-offs database

(24 October 2017) – In response to the growing number of research papers addressing the issue of urban resilience trade-offs, the Urban Resilience Research Network is calling for contributions to a new database.

A resilience trade-off refers to actions, policies or projects that enhance the capacity to adapt to a threat, or reduce the exposure to a specific risk, but lead to a loss in other adaptive capacities or increase exposure.

Mounting evidence from a number of case studies points to a paradox, says the Urban Resilience Research Network: our normative conceptualization of urban resilience belies such inherent trade-offs in city planning and policies.

For example, green infrastructure may enhance flood resilience through planning and design of new neighbourhoods, but also lead to eco- or green gentrification. A desalination plant may help to reduce vulnerability to drought, but at a high environmental, energy, and economic cost. Recognizing these unintended consequences, the concept of urban resilience trade-offs has been developed.

The aim of the new database is to raise awareness about these unintended consequences, to better understand them, and ultimately to build a typology of these trade-offs that can help decision-makers to avoid them and come up with resilience strategies that align resilience, sustainability and social justice.

The Network is looking for researchers to contribute case studies to this new section by completing a short questionnaire about the trade-off and submitting it along with an image. These case studies will be shared on the website and will contribute to a global urban resilience trade-off database.

For further information please see


We are working on a new website for ECOLISE.

Meanwhile you can follow our work on the Communities for Future website.

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