Connecting community and organisational resilience in Nairobi and Rotterdam

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Thursday, 23d September, 15:00 (UTC) 17:00 (CEST)

Civil society's engagement from North to South in urban development provides a complex picture that can be interpreted in many ways. This year's TRIALOG conference is dedicated to a critical (self) reflection of past and future roles of European civil society and academia in the global urbanisation discourse.  One of the 12 panels in this conference focuses on How can we better connect community resilience initiatives (CRI’s) to local governments?

Communities across the world take collective action during Covid-19. They offer a range of (temporary) coping mechanisms, which may be invisible, but crucial for community resilience. The initiatives range from sheltering the homeless, to making masks, creating employment, bringing people to hospital, improving public space, and ventilating buildings. Our research shows that the networks between community initiatives and local governments can be improved upon. In this session we explore networking: How are CRI’s and local governments connected in Rotterdam and Nairobi? How can the network of two cities which are far apart enable learning?

Community resilience entails that communities take collective action to prevent a crisis, cope with it and/or thrive afterwards. Research shows that (1) there are many communities initiatives during Covid-19; (2) the link between community initiatives and local governments, funders and NGO’s is often weak, but there are promising examples; (3) if community initiatives are supported, then these tend to be the same people as always (those with the networks and contacts), while new initiatives find it hard to connect.

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Panelists, Presenters and Moderator:

  • Beitske Boonstra NL | Erasmus University Rotterdam; Resilient Delta Institute, Rotterdam
  • Charles Gachanga KE | Mustard Seeds, DTL, Public Space Network (PSN), Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Marleen ten Vergert NL | Municipality of Rotterdam
  • Beatrice Hati KE | The Center for Frugal Innovation Africa (CFIA) – Kenya Hub
  • Naomi Sonneveld NL | Municipality of Rotterdam
  • Joseph Kimani KE | Slum Dwellers International-Kenya (SDI-K)
  • Jan Fransen NL | Institute of Housing and Urban development Studies