Sydney embarks on the 100 Resilient Cities journey
On June 26, 150 participants gathered at Sydney’s Customs House at Circular Quay, in an atmosphere of excitement and enthusiasm to be part of the launch of the city’s journey towards resilience as one of the world’s 100 Resilient Cities as part of the Rockefeller Foundation’s program.
The Agenda-Setting Workshop, as it’s known, marked the first step towards greater resilience for Sydney and recognised the work already underway. Lord Mayor Clover Moore welcomed participants, with Elizabeth Yee, vice president, strategic partnerships and solutions, and Nicola Thomson, associate director, representing 100RC.
Mara Bun chairs the panel.
Participants were encouraged to explore the meaning of resilience, debate the city’s current strengths and weaknesses and thus help set the agenda for the future resilience strategy to be drawn up over coming months.
Run by AECOM as workshop partners, the event was hosted by the City of Sydney on behalf of the whole of Metropolitan Sydney, where there are 41 local councils and strong State Government interest. However, so successful was the workshop that 40 of the 41 councils attended with an equally strong State Government presence. Others participating in a very broad spectrum of stakeholders were from the banking and the insurance industry, social sustainability groups, environmental and food security advocates and indigenous representatives.
Norma Shankie-Wiliams at the City Resilience Framework (CRF) wheel, an expression of the interrelated elements of city resilience.
As part of membership of the 100RC network, Sydney will receive:
- Financial and logistical assistance to establish a chief resilience officer (CRO), who will be recruited into the City of Sydney Council and who will lead the resilience strategy for Sydney and the wider metropolitan region
- Support for the CRO in leading the development of a resilience strategy
- Access to a platform of innovative organisations, from the private, public and not-for profit sectors, which provide services and tools to help design and implement the resilience strategy.
- Sharing of information between cities to foster best practice solutions and address problems collectively.
AECOM are already involved in resilience work for other 100RC cities around the world including Melbourne, Christchurch, San Francisco, Bangkok and Wellington, and as Workshop Partners in Sydney, played a critical role in the success of the event.
Suzanna Remmerswaal populates the CRF.
Led by me, with five senior AECOM people involved in facilitation on the day, the event was an unqualified success in achieving its outcomes. Playing a key role in facilitation were Jacinta McCann, Stephen Callaghan, Justine Kinch, Roger Swinbourne, Victoria Chantra and Lester Partridge. There was tireless support from Suzanna Remmerswaal and Rachelle Newman as the AECOM team supported City of Sydney staff throughout the day.
Ongoing stakeholder consultation will form a key part of developing the resilience strategy for Sydney, and all participants of the Workshop, together with those unable to attend and newly identified stakeholders, will be invited to participate as the journey continues.
AECOM is hoping to build on the success of the Sydney Workshop to support Sydney as a strategy partner going forward.