No Better Time To Build Urban Resilience. Experts Work With Asian Cities To Advance Actionable Project Proposals In Inaugural Programme Aimed At Strengthening Resilience

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(SINGAPORE, October 7, 2021) 

Temasek Foundation (TF), Centre for Liveable Cities (CLC), and Resilient Cities Network (R-Cities) today announced the completion of the first segment of the Temasek Foundation Urban Resilience Programme (TFURP). This programme, jointly supported by TF, CLC and R-Cities, brings together city leaders and urban practitioners across the Asia Pacific to develop strong proposals for critical infrastructure projects to accelerate investment in urban resilience. Seven cities, selected from across the region, have since taken the first steps by successfully completing the first segment aimed towards developing their own city action plan based on principles of liveability and resilience.

“To build resilience, cities must have the capacity to plan and deliver for the long term,” said Ms Lauren Sorkin, Executive Director, Resilient Cities Network. “By partnering with institutions of urban excellence, we are supporting cities in ASEAN and South Asia to prepare critical infrastructure projects that deliver multiple benefits. Our programme provides cities with the capacity and tools to advance attractive investment projects and appeal to progressive and traditional investors who are increasingly focused on climate, liveability, and resilience goals.”

As pressure brought on by climate change – rising sea levels, extreme weather events, and increasing heat, just to name a few – becomes more of a challenge for cities across the region, there is a critical need to strengthen investment in resilience. The TFURP is focused on the theme of improving waste or water management, through a holistic and systemic approach to address urban challenges in the next 20 to 30 years. Building resilient water and waste management infrastructure is particularly difficult for cities in ASEAN and South Asia. With inaction, waste generation is expected to increase by nearly 60 per cent[1] whilst up to 3.4 billion people are projected to be living under water-stressed conditions in the region by 2050[2].

“As urban populations increase, cities will face tremendous pressure on resources, and this may affect liveability and sustainability of the cities. I hope that the Temasek Foundation Urban Resilience Programme will provide a platform for regional leaders to exchange knowledge, experience and insights to tackle the challenges of planning and building resilient infrastructure and systems to support our communities. Together we can and must build a shared future for all,” said Mr Benedict Cheong, Chief Executive, Temasek Foundation International.

TFURP offers city practitioners the opportunity to strategise and connect with leading experts, as well as peer cities, to advance city resilience through targeted investment in resilient urban development projects. The programme helps to develop the capacity of cities to identify specific opportunities that advance urban resilience and liveability. The city project proposals being developed not only contribute to city resilience and enhance city liveability, but also address the impact of climate change.

“Cities need to build their capabilities today to deal with the potential disruptions of tomorrow,” said Mr Hugh Lim, Executive Director, Centre for Liveable Cities. “This programme focuses on water and waste management – fundamental provisions for improving the resilience of thriving and liveable cities. We are honoured to host this learning journey which will share experience from Singapore’s own development journey. We hope that participants will also be able to learn from one another’s experiences and bring their projects to fruition. We look forward to further support the resilience efforts of our participants by providing three selected cities the opportunity to pitch their projects at the World Cities Summit 2022, co-organised by the CLC.”

The 2021 TFURP cohort of cities took part in the capacity-building phase of TFURP over the past few weeks. These cities worked to advance a tangible project drawing on expertise and guidance from partners in the private sector and relevant institutions, and from Singapore’s experience in developing a highly dense yet highly liveable city.

“We learned through this programme that engaging the community at the early stages of a project is key for the long-term success and sustainability of an investment,” said Ms Mariani Yanti, Head of Cooperation, Jambi City Government. “TFURP is a great programme that should be attended by mayors, and officials from relevant departments. We really appreciate the opportunity given to Jambi City and would recommend the programme to any urban official.”

Following this initial capacity-building stage of the programme, three cities will advance into a more comprehensive engagement phase, including in-city thematic workshops to advance project proposals. The ultimate aim is for these cities to showcase their project ideas and goals to potential investors at the World Cities Summit 2022 (31 Jul – 3 Aug 2022) in Singapore.

Mrs Hemali Boghawala, Mayor of Surat, India stated, “As a mayor of one of India’s fastest growing cities, I am pleased to inform that our city has immensely benefitted from the online capacity-building Temasek Foundation Urban Resilience Programme. TFURP will enable mainstreaming climate change and resilience into the city’s sectoral policies and processes.”


[1] https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/30317

[2] https://www.uncrd.or.jp/content/documents/5782FINAL-Background%20paper-Prof.%20Visvanathan.pdf

ABOUT TEMASEK FOUNDATION

Temasek Foundation supports a diverse range of programmes that uplift lives and communities in Singapore and beyond. Temasek Foundation’s programmes, made possible through philanthropic endowments gifted by Temasek as well as gifts and other contributions from other donors, strive towards achieving positive outcomes for individuals and communities now, and for generations to come. Collectively, Temasek Foundation’s programmes strengthen social resilience, foster international exchange and regional capabilities, advance science, and protect the planet.

For more information on Temasek Foundation: www.temasekfoundation.org.sg

MEDIA CONTACT

Joshua Wong
joshuawong@temasekfoundation.org.sg

ABOUT CENTRE FOR LIVEABLE CITIES

The Centre for Liveable Cities (CLC) was established in June 2008 by the Ministry of National Development (MND) and the then-Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources (renamed Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment or MSE in 2020) to distil, create and share knowledge on liveable and sustainable cities. CLC’s work spans four main areas—Research, Capability Development, Knowledge Platforms, and Advisory. The CLC also co-organises and curates the World Cities Summit (WCS), a global platform for urban leaders and practitioners to share innovative solutions and forge partnerships for more liveable, sustainable and resilient cities. Through these activities, CLC hopes to provide the knowledge and support needed to make our cities better.

For more information on CLC: www.clc.gov.sg

For more information on WCS: www.worldcitiessummit.com.sg

MEDIA CONTACT

Pauline Leong
Pauline_LEONG@mnd.gov.sg 

ABOUT RESILIENT CITIES NETWORK

Resilient Cities Network is the world’s leading urban resilience network. Present in more than 100 cities, 40 countries, and 6 continents, R-Cities is a global city-led nonprofit organisation that brings together knowledge, practice, partnerships, and funding to empower cities to build a safe, equitable, and sustainable future for all.

For more information on Resilient Cities Network: www.resilientcitiesnetwork.org

MEDIA CONTACT

Nikki Rudnick
nrudnick@resilientcitiesnetwork.org

No Better Time To Build Urban Resilience. Experts Work With Asian Cities To Advance Actionable Project Proposals In Inaugural Programme Aimed At Strengthening Resilience