The Key is to Listen: Building Resilience in the Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara

Resilient Cities Network - The Key is to Listen Building Resilience in the Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara -
Written by Resilient Cities Network
Wednesday, 28 June 2023

By Javier Garduño, Lead Latin America and the Caribbean


In the face of a scorching heatwave gripping Mexico, the need to address the impacts of climate change and enhance urban resilience has never been more urgent. The Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara (AMG) is taking proactive steps towards this goal by developing its Metropolitan Resilience Strategy, through the Institute of Planning and Development of the Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara (IMEPLAN). This pioneering institution plays a crucial role in amplifying the voices of specialists and providing vital information and data to better understand urban and territorial phenomena within the AMG. Through their expertise in metropolitan planning and governance, IMEPLAN stands as a leading national and regional institution in this field.

Last week, we embarked on a journey of meaningful engagement, as we gathered a diverse group of experts, academics, government officials, and representatives from civil society organizations in a series of focus groups and workshops. The underlying theme? The key is to listen.

Mapping and Categorizing Regional Impacts and Tensions

Guided by IMEPLAN’s expertise, we initiated a comprehensive mapping and categorization exercise, aiming to identify the most pressing challenges facing the AMG. By harnessing IMEPLAN’s deep understanding of urban dynamics, we were able to delve into six crucial topics: Territorial Management and Planning, Metropolitan Governance, Mobility and Road Safety, Waste Management, Inequality and Social Policies, and Gender Equality. Through IMEPLAN’s data-driven approach, we gained valuable insights into the region’s resilience landscape.

The Key is to Listen Building Resilience in the Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara - Mapping and Categorizing Regional Impacts and Tension

Listening to Diverse Voices

IMEPLAN’s commitment to inclusivity became the cornerstone of our efforts, as we actively listened to the voices of specialists, academics, and stakeholders. By incorporating local expertise in understanding the intricacies of urban and territorial issues, we created a platform where perspectives converged, fostering a more comprehensive and informed dialogue. This collaboration ensured that the Resilience Strategy reflects the needs and aspirations of the AMG’s diverse communities.

Identifying Actionable Steps

Together with the key stakeholder’s guidance, we transcended diagnosis and focused on identifying actionable steps to drive the AMG’s resilience strategy forward. By leveraging the diverse wealth of knowledge, we explored potential actions that could enhance the region’s ability to withstand future shocks and stresses. IMEPLAN’s leadership in metropolitan planning and governance proved instrumental in crafting effective and context-specific solutions.

The Key is to Listen Building Resilience in the Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara - Listening to Diverse Voices

Contextualizing the Urgency

Amidst the heatwave engulfing the country, we were reminded of the harsh realities brought on by climate change. Extreme weather events serve as stark reminders that the impacts are already being felt, urging us to expedite our efforts in integrating resilience-focused urban planning. Through IMEPLAN’s expertise, we deepen our understanding of the urgency and solidify our commitment to safeguarding the AMG’s future.

The Key is to Listen Building Resilience in the Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara - Contextualizing the Urgency


“The Key is to Listen” serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of inclusive engagement and the invaluable contributions of IMEPLAN in building resilience within the AMG. By incorporating their cutting-edge research, expertise in planning, and commitment to governance, we lay the foundation for an effective Metropolitan Resilience Strategy. Together, we harness the collective wisdom of specialists, academics, public officials, and civil society representatives to create a future where the AMG thrives, even in the face of adversity.

As we move forward, let us celebrate the partnership between Resilient Cities Network and IMEPLAN, recognizing the critical role they play in shaping a resilient and vibrant Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara.

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