Barcelona is one of the major cities in Europe with a strong commitment to building urban resilience. In 2009, and as a response to different hazard-related episodes suffered in the past, Barcelona launched an integrative disaster risk management and failure prevention-focused program, based on stakeholder engagement and cross-departmental working groups.
This working methodology contributed to the recognition of Barcelona as a role model city for infrastructures and Services supply in 2013 by UNISDIR’s “Making Cities Resilient Campaign”. By the same token, the city was selected as one of the first 10 partner cities taking part in UN Habitat’s City Resilience Profiling Programme (CRPP) and to host its headquarters, thanks to a key partnership established with Barcelona City Council and the main stakeholders engaged in the implementation of resilience projects in the city. Only recently, the Rockefeller Foundation selected Barcelona as one of the 100 Resilient Cities network, a position awarded to those cities who have demonstrated a commitment in building their own capacities to navigate the shocks and stresses of an increasingly complex urban environment.
A group of 13 companies and high-level research centres based in Barcelona and with a high level of engagement in the building resilience process have set up a public-private alliance with Barcelona City Council and UN-Habitat’s City Resilience Profiling Programme. Its aim is to boost the city’s resilience strategy and to foster synergies between them by actively taking part in the working groups of Barcelona’s Resilience Boards, constituted in 2009 with the mission of reducing the city’s vulnerabilities. The Resilience Boards have been the framework for forging this partnership that, as of today, has resulted in the implementation of several key resilience projects in the city, constituting the foundation of the city’s resilience strategy, and the genesis of the recently created Resilience Department.