Climate Change Adaptation and Urban Resilience

A Resilient City should be prepared to anticipate, prevent, absorb and recover from shocks and stresses, while maintaining its essential functions, structure, and identity as well as adapting and thriving in the face of continual change.

ICLEI first introduced the notion of Resilient Cities during the 2002 UN World Summit on Sustainable Development, and forged partnerships on urban resilience with UNDDR, UNDP, UNHABITAT, and UNEP.

ICLEI defines a Resilient City to be prepared to anticipate, prevent, absorb and recover from shocks and stresses — especially those brought about by rapid environmental, technological, social, and demographic change — while maintaining its essential functions, structure, and identity as well as adapting and thriving in the face of continual change.

In assisting East Asian local governments to enhance their understanding and practical capacities in urban climate change adaptation and resilience development, and explore potential solutions based on local needs, ICLEI East Asia works with partners to deliver projects in transferring the latest theories, methodologies, tools, practical experiences from around the world to local governments in the region.


Together with our partners, ICLEI East Asia supports local governments in the East Asian region to:

  • Learn from advanced practices around the world, and explore potential solutions based on local needs;
  • Receive professional strategic and action planning advice from global experts;
  • Access to opportunities of financing and/or participation in projects/programs related to urban resilience, climate change adaptation and low carbon development;
  • Promote international exchange to enable learning and sharing of successful experiences and achievements among peers.

Resilient Cities Congress ‧ Resilient Cities Asia-Pacific Series

The Resilience Cities Congress convened annually from 2010 to 2019 by ICLEI and the Federal City of Bonn, providing a global and open space for urban practitioners, policymakers, and researchers working in urban resilience and climate change adaptation. In response to the need for regional dialogues, the annual ICLEI Resilient Cities Asia-Pacific series was also created in 2015.

Building upon the experience and network established during the Resilient Cities Congress, ICLEI and the Federal City of Bonn newly launched Daring Cities – a virtual, action-oriented forum – in 2020,  aiming to recognize, mobilize and empower courageous urban leaders for tackling the climate emergency.


Urban Resilience Training Series

From 2019 through 2021, ICLEI East Asia and UNDRR ONEA-GETI co-delivered tailored and in-depth training to 4 selected cities – Ningbo (2019), Chengdu (2020), Shanghai Changning, and Beijing (2021) – in China, aiming to enhance their understanding and practical capacities in resilience development, explore potential solutions based on local development conditions and needs and develop integrated climate adaptation and disaster risk reduction action plans.

Moving into 2022, ICLEI will continue working with UNDRR in delivering the new project “Making Cities Resilient 2030: Strengthening Local Disaster Resilience in China,” with specific objectives of localizing urban resilience strategy in China and ensuring its applicability.


Urban Climate Change Adaptation Mainstreaming in China

From 2019 through 2021, ICLEI East Asia actively participated in the Asian Development Bank Technical Assistance Project “Mainstreaming Urban Climate Change Adaptation in the People’s Republic of China,” which was implemented by the Chinese Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development.

As a core consultant of the technical team, ICLEI contributed to the development of the Technical Guidelines for Urban Climate Change Adaptation (UCCA), which aims to provide a step-by-step approach for Chinese cities to assess their climate change risks and vulnerabilities, in order to plan and implement adaptation actions accordingly. In addition, ICLEI has also supported organizing international workshops and worked closely with the pilot city Zhuhai in conducting assessments, proceeding with relevant reports, and providing technical advice on policy development and implementation.


For more information, please contact

Ms. Huan Zheng at

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