News

UNISDR Report Highlights DRR Challenges in African Cities

5 December 2012: The UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR) has released a report, titled "City Resilience in Africa: A Ten Essentials Pilot," which highlights a lack of means, capacity and political will within a number of medium-sized African towns to address disaster risk reduction (DRR).

The report assesses three Kenyan cities, Narok, Kisumu and Moshi, against the UNISDR's global "Making Cities Resilient" Campaign's "Ten Essentials" for achieving resilience. It notes that in many instances, there is a recognition of the value of DRR but that there is a lack of budget, capacity and ability to implement and make use of early warning systems to reduce risk. The studies also suggest that this is further compounded by the increase in disaster events, particularly floods and droughts, rural-urban migration and ecosystem destruction. Additional findings highlighted by the report include the importance of: using traditional knowledge in conjunction with other tools; mainstreaming DRR into urban planning; and planning strategically at city level to avoid exposure to disaster risk.

The three cities assessed were chosen because they have signed up to the "Making Cities Resilient" campaign. The campaign addresses issues of local governance and urban risk. With the support of partners, the campaign advocates for widespread commitment by local governments to build resilience to disasters and increased support by national governments to cities for strengthening local capacities. It also aims to develop global goals and targets that are applicable for all cities. [UNISDR Press Release] [Publication: City Resilience in Africa: A Ten Essentials Pilot] [Making Cities Resilient Campaign Website]