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Understanding urban vulnerability, adaptation and resilience in the context of climate change

Bulkeley, H.; Tuts, R.

Understanding urban vulnerability, adaptation and resilience in the context of climate change Thumbnail


R. Tuts


Climate change processes pose significant challenges to development in cities across West Africa. These processes shape and mediate urban vulnerability across urban areas and hinder wider development efforts across these cities. This paper reviews these emerging perspectives within the context of UN-Habitat’s work in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso and Saint-Louis, Senegal. It argues that policy makers and researchers need to engage with issues of climate change and development at an urban scale and across ‘ordinary cities’ through exploring the range of vulnerabilities inherent in each city. Specifically, the paper illustrates the diversities and similarities of climate change processes that exist across these two medium sized, or ordinary West African cities, the intersections with existing economic profiles and potential impacts and the emerging urban governance responses to these issues. It demonstrates the need to move beyond constructions of an archetypal ‘West African’ city, and illustrates the emerging work by UN-Habitat and local partners in developing localised knowledges about urban vulnerabilities and the multiple and divergent ways in which these issues are beginning to be addressed.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2013-07
Deposit Date May 20, 2013
Publicly Available Date Jul 12, 2013
Journal Local Environment
Print ISSN 1354-9839
Electronic ISSN 1469-6711
Publisher Taylor and Francis Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 18
Issue 6
Pages 646-662
Keywords Climate change, Urban, Vulnerability, West African cities, Adaptation.
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