The science of resilience suggests that urban systems become resilient when they promote progressive transformative change to social and physical infrastructure. But resilience is challenged by global environmental risks and by social and economic trends that create inequality and exclusion. Here we argue that distortionary inequality and precarity undermine social processes that give access to public infrastructure and ecosystems thereby undermining urban resilience. We illustrate how inequality and precarity undermine resilience with reference to social exclusion and insecurity in growing urban settlements in the Asia-Pacific region. Inequality and exposure to environmental risks represent major challenges for governance that can be best overcome through inclusion and giving voice to marginalised populations.                     

Adger WN, Safra de Campos R, Siddiqui T, Szaboova L (2020). Urban Studies, 57(7), 1588-1595.

Commentary: Inequality, precarity and sustainable ecosystems as elements of urban resilience