100 Resilient Cities Announces Final Challenge & an Additional $64M Financial Commitment

Launch Marks the Final Opportunity for Cities around the World to Join the 100RC Network & Urban Resilience Movement

The Rockefeller Foundation Will Also Announce New $64M Commitment to 100RC,
Bringing Total to $164M

New York City (July 21) – Today, from the “Cities for Tomorrow” conference at the New York Times Center, The Rockefeller Foundation President Dr. Judith Rodin launched the opening of the third and final challenge for 100 Resilient Cities - Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) – which selects cities from around the globe to receive support from 100RC.

She also announced that the Foundation is dedicating an additional $64 million to 100RC, boosting the Foundation’s total commitment to the global resilience initiative to $164 million.  Overall, the foundation has dedicated over $500 million to their resilience efforts.

Through the 100 Resilient Cities Challenge, 100RC is seeking to uncover the next round of partner cities committed to building resilience to the shocks and stresses they face. Through two challenges over the last two years, 100RC has selected 67 cities to join the 100RC Network. Winners of this final round will be announced in April 2016. 100RC will select cities based on a city’s demonstrated commitment to building resilience in the face of the complex, multiform challenges of the 21st century – along with strong Mayoral leadership and commitment to the initiative.

“What we’re learning through the first two rounds of the 100 Resilient Cities Challenge is that not every disruption must become a disaster for cities,” said Rodin. “We can build our cities to be resilient – to be better prepared for, to withstand, an event to transform and grow in the face of these shocks and stresses. And through those same investments, cities not only become future-proof, they become better places to live and work right now. We’re excited to welcome the final 33 cities to join us in this work.”

“We are excited to recognize the next group of urban resilience pioneers to the 100 Resilience Cities family,” said 100RC President Michael Berkowitz. “The leaders of our 100 cities will help create a global practice of urban resilience and help to develop new solutions and new ways of planning for an uncertain future. We also want to express our deep gratitude for The Rockefeller Foundation’s commitment to our work and the invaluable support they provide us.” 

From fault lines to sea level rise, population growth, traffic congestion, violence, or all of the above, cities everywhere face a new normal of chronic stresses and acute shocks. The need for urban resilience is driven by three forces:

  • Urbanization. By 2050, three-fourths of the world’s population will live in cities, putting new strains on limited resources.
  • Globalization. Cities are more interconnected than ever before – and a system failure in one city can cause collapse in economies across the globe.
  • Climate Change. For the many cities located in fragile ecosystems and along coasts, the impacts of climate change can be particularly catastrophic. Coastal flooding could produce damages costing $1 trillion worldwide per year by 2050. In the United States alone, 23 of the 25 most densely populated states are along the coast.

Cities in the 100RC network are already seeing significant impacts as a result of the relationship, including Kigali, Rwanda – selected in the 100RC challenge second round.

“Kigali’s membership in the 100 Resilient Cities network further recognizes the city’s role as an innovative, progressive city,” said Kigali Mayor Ndayisaba Fidele. “This partnership will enable the city to leverage resources, knowledge, and partnerships in new and exciting ways. The lasting effects of this partnership will result in renewed resilience thinking in East Africa and beyond.”

100RC is dedicated to helping cities become more resilient to the ‘shocks’ – catastrophic events like hurricanes, fires, and floods – and ‘stresses’ – slow-moving disasters like water shortages, homelessness, and unemployment – they increasingly face in the 21st century. Each city in the 100RC network receives four concrete types of support:

  • Financial and logistical guidance for establishing an innovative new position in city government, a Chief Resilience Officer, who will lead the city’s resilience efforts;
  • Technical support for development of a robust resilience strategy;
  • Access to solutions, service providers, and partners from the private, public and NGO sectors who can help them develop and implement their resilience strategies; and
  • Membership of a global network of member cities who can learn from and help each other.

About 100 Resilient Cities—Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation

100 Resilient Cities - Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) is dedicated to helping cities become more resilient to social, economic and physical challenges they are increasingly facing in the 21st century. 100RC provides this assistance through: funding for a Chief Resilience Officer who will lead the resilience efforts; resources for drafting a resilience building strategy; access to private sector, public sector, and NGO created resilience tools; and membership in a global network of peer cities to share best practices and challenges. 100RC currently has sixty-seven member cities.

Learn more about 100RC at www.100resilientcities.org.

Press contact: Andrew Brenner (ABrenner@100RC.org; 646-612-7236)

About The Rockefeller Foundation

For more than 100 years, The Rockefeller Foundation’s mission has been to promote the well-being of humanity throughout the world. Today, The Rockefeller Foundation pursues this mission through dual goals: advancing inclusive economies that expand opportunities for more broadly shared prosperity, and building resilience by helping people, communities and institutions prepare for, withstand, and emerge stronger from acute shocks and chronic stresses. To achieve these goals, The Rockefeller Foundation works at the intersection of four focus areas – advance health, revalue ecosystems, secure livelihoods, and transform cities – to address the root causes of emerging challenges and create systemic change. Together with partners and grantees, The Rockefeller Foundation strives to catalyze and scale transformative innovations, create unlikely partnerships that span sectors, and take risks others cannot – or will not. To learn more, please visit www.rockefellerfoundation.org

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