sustainability-logo

Journal Browser

Journal Browser

Special Issue "Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2020).

Printed Edition Available!
A printed edition of this Special Issue is available here.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Grazia Brunetta
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Scientific Coordinator of the Responsible Risk Resilience Centre (R3C), Professor of Urban and Regional Planning. Politecnico di Torino, Interuniversity Department of Regional and Urban Studies and Planning, Viale Mattioli, 25, 10139 Torino, Italy
Interests: spatial planning; regional development; urban resilience; strategic environmental assessment
Prof. Alessandra Faggian
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Vice Provost for Research, Director of Social Sciences, Professor of Applied Economics. Gran Sasso Science Institute, Via M. Iacobucci, 2, 67100 L’Aquila, Italy
Interests: human capital; migration; regional resilience
Dr. Ombretta Caldarice
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Assistant Professor in Urban and Regional Planning, Politecnico di Torino, Responsible Risk Resilience Centre (R3C), Interuniversity Department of Regional and Urban Studies and Planning, Viale Mattioli, 25, 10139 Torino, Italy
Interests: urban resilience; spatial planning; urban regulation; land use policy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Over the last few years, resilience has emerged as a “new way of thinking” (Folke, 2016) for dealing with cities’ uncertainties and challenges. As promoted by UN Sustainable Development Goal 11, urban resilience is increasingly seen as a driver for change (Merrow and Newell, 2016) so that planning approaches worldwide are straightening notions of “fluidity, reflexivity, contingency, connectivity, multiplicity and polyvocality” (Davoudi et al., 2013). At the same time, resilience is commonly criticized for being too ambiguous and an “empty signifier” (Wichselgartner and Kelman, 2015) as it is difficult to operationalize it (Vale, 2014). Although several frameworks have been already proposed to “capturing resilience” in both the academic and public discourse, the existing approaches are confined to measure specific disturbances so that less attention has been directed to consider resilience as a continually changing process. In a nutshell, the developed methods of resilient metrics are set indicators of what is easy to measure rather than what is important (Carpenter et al., 2009).

This Special Issue seeks to synthesize the state-of-the-art knowledge on theories and practices on measuring urban resilience. In particular, we are particularly interested in both empirical and theoretical papers that address one or more of the following questions: What are the theoretical perspectives of measuring urban resilience? How can urban resilience a property to be measured? What are the existing models and methods for measuring urban resilience? What are the main features that a method for measuring urban resilience need to have to guide properly adaptation and territorial governance? What is the role of measuring urban resilience in operationalizing cities’ ability to adapt, recover and benefit from shocks? In addition to the submitted peer-review papers related to measuring urban resilience, the Special Issue will also comprise selected papers from the XXXIX Annual Scientific Conference of the Italian Association of Regional Science (https://www.aisre.it/en/annual-scientific-conference/introduction). Authors who presented their papers at the conference will be invited by the Guest Editors to submit their manuscripts to the Special Issue and enter into the peer-review process.

Finally, we are interested in better connecting worldwide researchers to foster collaborations on the theme of “Understanding Urban Resilience”. Therefore, we will involve all the authors to be connected to the research activity of the Responsible Risk Resilience Centre (R3C) of Politecnico di Torino in particular on future perspectives about urban resilience research.

References:

Carpenter S.R., Folke C., Norström A., Olsson O., Schultz L., Agarwal B., et al. (2012) Program on ecosystem change and society: An international research strategy for integrated social-ecological systems. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 4, 134–138.

Davoudi S., Brooks E., Mehmood, A. (2013) Evolutionary Resilience and Strategies for Climate Adaptation, Planning Practice and Research, 28:3, 307–322.

Folke C. (2016) Resilience, Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Environmental Science, 10.1093/acrefore/9780199389414.013.8.

Meerow S., Newell J.P. (2016) Urban resilience for whom, what, when, where and why? Urban Geography, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02723638.2016.1206395.

Vale L.J. (2014) The politics of resilient cities: whose resilience and whose city? Building Research & Information, 42:2, 191-201.

Weichselgartner J., Kelman I. (2015) Geographies of resilience: Challenges and opportunities of a descriptive concept. Progress in Human Geography, 39(3), 249–267.

Prof. Grazia Brunetta
Prof. Alessandra Faggian
Dr. Ombretta Caldarice
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Urban resilience
  • Spatial planning
  • Quantitative, qualitative and mixed models and methods
  • Empirically-based case studies

Published Papers (13 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Editorial

Jump to: Research, Review, Other

Editorial
Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience
Sustainability 2021, 13(3), 1113; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13031113 - 21 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 664
Abstract
The concept of resilience has arisen as a “new way of thinking” [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)

Research

Jump to: Editorial, Review, Other

Article
Breaking the Black-Box of Regional Resilience: A Taxonomy Using a Dynamic Cumulative Shift-Share Occupational Approach
Sustainability 2020, 12(21), 9070; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12219070 - 31 Oct 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 767
Abstract
In the European literature on the regional and local development, the concept of resilience has progressively gained momentum, eventually overcoming that of competitiveness and posing a critical challenge for the future of territorial studies and the territorialisation of the policy discourse. In the [...] Read more.
In the European literature on the regional and local development, the concept of resilience has progressively gained momentum, eventually overcoming that of competitiveness and posing a critical challenge for the future of territorial studies and the territorialisation of the policy discourse. In the current economic turmoil, the success of an urban and regional economy relies more and more on its capacity to react to sudden shocks in a positive and evolutionary perspective, i.e., in its resilience. Nevertheless, as a recent analysis of the employment dynamics of Italian metro-regions in the period before and after 2008 has demonstrated that the existing taxonomies may be distant from reality and hardly communicable. The paper proposes a taxonomy of regional resilience based on the consideration of the region’s capacity of both improving its employment rate during the pre-crisis period and overcoming the concurrent performance of the nation. Via a shift-share analysis of the employment in Italian metro-regions, the paper investigates the contribution of the sectoral structure of the local labour market in terms of economic resilience. The result is twofold: a geography of the dynamism of the territorial systems in Italy that diverges from some “classic” interpretative frameworks; a novel taxonomic approach to regional resilience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Supporting Resilient Urban Planning through Walkability Assessment
Sustainability 2020, 12(19), 8131; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12198131 - 02 Oct 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1066
Abstract
The urban planning and evaluation literature suggests that making a walkable city means creating a resilient and healthy city. In recent years, alternative mobility has been the subject of numerous studies, showing that the concept of urban walkability can be used as an [...] Read more.
The urban planning and evaluation literature suggests that making a walkable city means creating a resilient and healthy city. In recent years, alternative mobility has been the subject of numerous studies, showing that the concept of urban walkability can be used as an additional support in planning resilient cities. Though researchers agree that walkability assessment has a positive impact on public space planning, it is still difficult to include the topic in planning strategies because of its novelty in the scientific debate. This paper will first review the literature on walkability assessment and then propose a multi-methodological assessment framework that fills the gaps in existing assessment methods. The multi-methodological assessment framework contributes to overcoming the idea that objective and subjective aspects are “not part of the same planning project.” Thanks to its combination of hard and soft methods, the assessment framework illustrated in this paper can consider physical and perceptual aspects simultaneously and represent them visually using Geographic Information Systems (GIS). It can thus provide easily readable results that can be applied in establishing guidelines for planning resilient cities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Energy Consumption Models at Urban Scale to Measure Energy Resilience
Sustainability 2020, 12(14), 5678; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12145678 - 15 Jul 2020
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1363
Abstract
Energy resilience can be reached with a secure, sustainable, competitive, and affordable system. In order to achieve energy resilience in the urban environment, urban-scale energy models play a key role in supporting the promotion and identification of effective energy-efficient and low-carbon policies pertaining [...] Read more.
Energy resilience can be reached with a secure, sustainable, competitive, and affordable system. In order to achieve energy resilience in the urban environment, urban-scale energy models play a key role in supporting the promotion and identification of effective energy-efficient and low-carbon policies pertaining to buildings. In this work, a dynamic urban-scale energy model, based on an energy balance, has been designed to take into account the local climate conditions and morphological urban-scale parameters. The aim is to present an engineering methodology, applied to clusters of buildings, using the available urban databases. This methodology has been calibrated and optimized through an iterative procedure on 102 residential buildings in a district of the city of Turin (Italy). The results of this work show how a place-based dynamic energy balance methodology can also be sufficiently accurate at an urban scale with an average seasonal relative error of 14%. In particular, to achieve this accuracy, the model has been optimized by correcting the typological and geometrical characteristics of the buildings and the typologies of ventilation and heating system; in addition, the indoor temperatures of the buildings—that were initially estimated as constant—have been correlated to the climatic variables. The proposed model can be applied to other cities utilizing the existing databases or, being an engineering model, can be used to assess the impact of climate change or other scenarios. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Mainstreaming Energetic Resilience by Morphological Assessment in Ordinary Land Use Planning. The Case Study of Moncalieri, Turin (Italy)
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4443; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114443 - 30 May 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1263
Abstract
Energetic resilience is seen as one of the most prominent fields of investigation in the upcoming years. The increasing efficiency of urban systems depends on the conversion of energetic production of buildings, and therefore, from the capacity of urban systems to be more [...] Read more.
Energetic resilience is seen as one of the most prominent fields of investigation in the upcoming years. The increasing efficiency of urban systems depends on the conversion of energetic production of buildings, and therefore, from the capacity of urban systems to be more rational in the use of renewable resources. Nevertheless, the integration of the energetic regulation into the ordinary urban planning documents is far from being reached in most of planning processes. In Italy, mainstreaming energetic resilience in ordinary land use planning appears particularly challenging, even in those Local Administrations that tried to implement the national legislation into Local Building Regulation. In this work, an empirical methodology to provide an overall assessment of the solar production capacity has been applied to selected indicators of urban morphology among the different land use parcel-zones, while implementing a geographic information system-based approach to the city of Moncalieri, Turin (Italy). Results demonstrate that, without exception, the current minimum energy levels required by law are generally much lower than the effective potential solar energy production that each land use parcel-zone could effectively produce. We concluded that local planning processes should update their land use plans to reach environmental sustainability targets, while at the same time the energetic resilience should be mainstreamed in urban planning by an in-depth analysis of the effective morphological constraints. These aspects may also represent a contribution to the international debates on energetic resilience and on the progressive inclusion of energy subjects in the land use planning process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Dynamic Models for Exploring the Resilience in Territorial Scenarios
Sustainability 2020, 12(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12010003 - 18 Dec 2019
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 1524
Abstract
The present paper focuses on the role covered by dynamic models as support for the decision-making process in the evaluation of policies and actions for increasing the resilience of cities and territories. In recent decades, urban resilience has been recognized as a dynamic [...] Read more.
The present paper focuses on the role covered by dynamic models as support for the decision-making process in the evaluation of policies and actions for increasing the resilience of cities and territories. In recent decades, urban resilience has been recognized as a dynamic and multidimensional phenomenon that characterizes urban and metropolitan area dynamics. Therefore, it may be considered a fundamental aspect of urban and territorial planning. The employment of quantitative methods, such as dynamic models, is useful for the prediction of the dynamic behavior of territories and of their resilience. The present work discusses the system dynamics model and the Lotka–Volterra cooperative systems and shows how these models can aid technicians in resilience assessment and also decision makers in the definition of policies and actions, especially if integrated in wide evaluation frameworks for urban resilience achievements. This paper aims to provide an epistemological perspective of the application of dynamic models in resilience assessment, underlying the possible contribution to this issue through the analysis of a real case study and methodological framework. The main objective of this work is to lay the basis for future compared applications of these two models to the same case study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Indicators for Monitoring Urban Climate Change Resilience and Adaptation
Sustainability 2019, 11(10), 2931; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11102931 - 23 May 2019
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 4275
Abstract
In the face of accelerating climate change, urbanization and the need to adapt to these changes, the concept of resilience as an interdisciplinary and positive approach has gained increasing attention over the last decade. However, measuring resilience and monitoring adaptation efforts have received [...] Read more.
In the face of accelerating climate change, urbanization and the need to adapt to these changes, the concept of resilience as an interdisciplinary and positive approach has gained increasing attention over the last decade. However, measuring resilience and monitoring adaptation efforts have received only limited attention from science and practice so far. Thus, this paper aims to provide an indicator set to measure urban climate resilience and monitor adaptation activities. In order to develop this indicator set, a four-step mixed method approach was implemented: (1) based on a literature review, relevant resilience indicators were selected, (2) researchers, consultants and city representatives were then invited to evaluate those indicators in an online survey before the remaining indicator candidates were validated in a workshop (3) and finally reviewed by sector experts (4). This thorough process resulted in 24 indicators distributed over 24 action fields based on secondary data. The participatory approach allowed the research team to take into account the complexity and interdisciplinarity nature of the topic, as well as place- and context-specific parameters. However, it also showed that in order to conduct a holistic assessment of urban climate resilience, a purely quantitative, indicator-based approach is not sufficient, and additional qualitative information is needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Evaluating and Planning Green Infrastructure: A Strategic Perspective for Sustainability and Resilience
Sustainability 2019, 11(10), 2726; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11102726 - 14 May 2019
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2440
Abstract
In the light of the current changing global scenarios, green infrastructure is obtaining increasing relevance in planning policies, especially due to its ecological, environmental and social components which contribute to pursuing sustainable and resilient planning and designing of cities and territories. The issue [...] Read more.
In the light of the current changing global scenarios, green infrastructure is obtaining increasing relevance in planning policies, especially due to its ecological, environmental and social components which contribute to pursuing sustainable and resilient planning and designing of cities and territories. The issue of green infrastructure is framed within the conceptual contexts of sustainability and resilience, which are described through the analysis of their common aspects and differences with a particular focus on planning elements. In particular, the paper uses two distinct case studies of green infrastructure as representative: the green infrastructure of the Region Languedoc-Roussillon in France and the one of the Province of Turin in Italy. The analysis of two case studies focuses on the evaluation process carried on about the social-ecological system and describes the methodologies and the social-ecological indicators used to define the green infrastructure network. We related these indicators to their possible contribution to the measurement of sustainability and resilience. The analysis of this relationship led us to outline some conclusive considerations on the complex role of the design of green infrastructure with reference to sustainability and resilience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Resilience and Sectoral Composition Change of Italian Inner Areas in Response to the Great Recession
Sustainability 2019, 11(9), 2679; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11092679 - 10 May 2019
Cited by 25 | Viewed by 1604
Abstract
This paper focuses on the response of Italian inner areas to the Great Recession. Inner areas represent the majority of the Italian territory and are very heterogeneous in terms of (unstable) growth trajectories and industrial composition. One key issue that has partially hindered [...] Read more.
This paper focuses on the response of Italian inner areas to the Great Recession. Inner areas represent the majority of the Italian territory and are very heterogeneous in terms of (unstable) growth trajectories and industrial composition. One key issue that has partially hindered a thorough empirical analysis of the development paths of these areas so far, is defining these inner areas. To this aim, we adopt the recent classification proposed by the National Strategy for Inner Areas (2014), which identified six categories based on the travel distance from service provision centers. Our purpose is to analyze the potential structural change of inner vs non-inner areas in the face of the 2007–2008 economic crisis, assessing their adaptive capacity to the recessionary disturbance and the factors underlying their industrial composition change. We found that urban poles and inner areas had different abilities to re-adapt their local industrial compositions in response to the economic crisis with obvious effects on their future resilience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
The Multi-Risk Assessment Approach as a Basis for the Territorial Resilience
Sustainability 2019, 11(9), 2612; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11092612 - 07 May 2019
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1092
Abstract
The deep modifications to climate are currently provoking risks of increasing impact, that can cause unexpected consequences, interacting with other risks. However, the available planning regulations and instruments appear inadequate to face this challenge, most of all at a local scale. This paper [...] Read more.
The deep modifications to climate are currently provoking risks of increasing impact, that can cause unexpected consequences, interacting with other risks. However, the available planning regulations and instruments appear inadequate to face this challenge, most of all at a local scale. This paper presents a semi-quantitative methodology for the assessment of multiple risks, developed for the direct use of the municipality technicians, in order to increase their awareness towards multiple risks and unexpected events that could hit their territory. The methodology is based on the assignation of rates to the risks, and on a simple calculation of the binary interactions. It was tested on two Italian case studies, revealing a good feasibility in the results obtained for the interactions, and highlighting some problems neglected in the sectorial risk plans. The methodology is a background knowledge of the ‘Responsible Risk Resilience Center’ (R3C) of Politecnico di Torino, and it was furtherly developed through an in-depth analysis of the territorial vulnerabilities. This paper introduces two new indicators of sensitivity towards external risks, related to fire and flood risks, proposed for the application at a local scale. The indicators belong to a wider R3C framework in the phase of development to operationalize resilience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Mapping Urban Resilience for Spatial Planning—A First Attempt to Measure the Vulnerability of the System
Sustainability 2019, 11(8), 2331; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11082331 - 18 Apr 2019
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 2201
Abstract
The concept of ‘resilience’ breaks down silos by providing a ‘conceptual umbrella’ under which different disciplines come together to tackle complex problems with more holistic interventions. Acknowledging the complexity of Davoudi’s approach (2012) means to recognize that ‘spatial resilience’ is influenced by many [...] Read more.
The concept of ‘resilience’ breaks down silos by providing a ‘conceptual umbrella’ under which different disciplines come together to tackle complex problems with more holistic interventions. Acknowledging the complexity of Davoudi’s approach (2012) means to recognize that ‘spatial resilience’ is influenced by many phenomena that are difficult to measure: the adaptation and transformation of a co-evolutive system. This paper introduces a pioneering approach that is propaedeutic to the spatial measure of urban resilience assuming that it is possible to define a system as being intrinsically vulnerable to stress and shocks and minimally resilient, as described by Folke in 2006. In this sense, vulnerability is counterpoised to resilience, even if they act simultaneously: the first includes the exposure to a specific hazard, whereas the second emerges from the characteristics of a complex socio-ecological and technical system. Here we present a Geographic Information System-based vulnerability matrix performed in ESRI ArcGIS 10.6 environment as an output of the spatial interaction between sensitivities, shocks, and linear pressures of the urban system. The vulnerability is the first step of measuring the resilience of the system by a semi-quantitative approach. The spatial interaction of these measures is useful to define the interventions essential to designing and building the adaptation of the built environment by planning governance. Results demonstrate how mapping resilience aids the spatial planning decision-making processes, indicating where and what interventions are necessary to adapt and transform the system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Review

Jump to: Editorial, Research, Other

Review
Modelling, Measuring, and Visualising Community Resilience: A Systematic Review
Sustainability 2020, 12(19), 7896; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12197896 - 24 Sep 2020
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1992
Abstract
The concept of community resilience receives much attention in studies and applications due to its ability to provide preparedness against hazards, to protect our life against risks, and to recover to stable living conditions. Nevertheless, community resilience is complex, contextual, multifaceted, and therefore [...] Read more.
The concept of community resilience receives much attention in studies and applications due to its ability to provide preparedness against hazards, to protect our life against risks, and to recover to stable living conditions. Nevertheless, community resilience is complex, contextual, multifaceted, and therefore hard to define, recognise, and operationalise. An essential advantage of having a complete process for community resilience is the capacity to be aware of and respond appropriately in times of adversity. A three-step process constituting of modelling, measurement, and visualisation is crucial to determine components, to assess value, and to represent information of community resilience, respectively. The goal of this review is to offer a general overview of multiple perspectives for modelling, measuring, and visualising community resilience derived from related and emerging studies, projects, and tools. By engaging throughout the entire process, which involves three sequential steps as we mentioned above, communities can discover important components of resilience, optimise available local and natural resources, and mitigate the impact of impairments effectively and efficiently. To this end, we conduct a systematic review of 77 different literature records published from 2000 to 2020, concentrating on five research questions. We believe that researchers, practitioners, and policymakers can utilise this paper as a potential reference and a starting point to surpass current hindrances as well as to sharpen their future research directions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Other

Erratum
Erratum: Urso, G., et al. Resilience and Sectoral Composition Change of Italian Inner Areas in Response to the Great Recession. Sustainability 2019, 11, 2679
Sustainability 2019, 11(12), 3432; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11123432 - 21 Jun 2019
Viewed by 957
Abstract
The authors would like to make the following corrections to the published paper [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bridging the Gap: The Measure of Urban Resilience)
Back to TopTop