resilience.io Integrated, collaborative tools for urban resilience

                                                              

resilience.io Integrated, collaborative tools for urban resilience

The Ecological Sequestration Trust (TEST)
Solution proposed by: 
The Ecological Sequestration Trust with Imperial College London, The Institute for Integrate Economic Research, Future Earth Ltd, International Centre for Earth Simulation, Geodan, Oasis, Cities Alliance.
In a Nutshell: 
resilience.io is an open-source tool that allows city-regions globally, to assess their current development path and map out a more sustainable and resilient trajectory. It is intended to support planning, investment and policy decision-making, to embed resilience within city-regions and help deliver the post 2015 Sustainable Development Goals.
Where and When: 
We have interested municipal partners for practical demonstrations of resilience.io in Greater Accra, Ghana; Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia; Suzhou, China and Dorset, UK with global scale-up planned for 2019. Phase one is nearing completion and a prototype will be demonstrated for the Water Sanitation and Hygiene sector in Ghana in May 2016.
Challenges: 
Global population growth and rapid urbanisation are increasing our demand on environmental assets and we have been reluctant to account for the cost of pollution, natural resource loss and social impacts. Rising numbers of people are becoming vulnerable to stresses and shocks associated with climate change, resource scarcities, ecosystem degradation and the disruption of key resource flows. These shocks damage economic growth potential and the ability to reduce social and environmental degradation in both developed and developing regions. resilience.io brings a collaborative, integrated approach to help reduce these pressures; improving social, economic and ecological outcomes.
Innovation: 
A computer-based platform, resilience.io is the world's first analysis and decision-support tool, that allows users to accurately model resource flows, for example, energy, food and water, so that city-regions can manage both their economy and critical supporting ecosystems. It is designed to connect to many data sources, including from earth observation satellites, government and private sector data, local sensor networks, mobile phones and survey data. This data is processed by the innovative integrated systems model and visualized to enable stakeholders to make better city-region policy, planning and investment decisions. This open-source platform is developed to be a global public good.
Concept: 
The approach has five components: an integrated city – region systems model, resilience.io, a computer-based platform that provides an integrated systems view of a city-region with which to ‘test’ various policy and technology interventions. At its heart is a set of systems models including agent-based, land use and resource-technologies modelling, Collaboration laboratories, “collaboratories” including members from the private, public, civil and academic sectors together building collaborative intelligence, and breaking down siloes, to take decisions to achieve more resilient development pathways. A data brokerage system including specifications, quality, standards and collection strategies which enable data across domains to be used to provide an integrated perspective. All within an open source environment which enables city-regions to freely ‘download’ a local version of resilience.io. Finally, an Urban Development Investment fund (UDIF) provides sustained long-term return to investors together with measurable environmental and social impact. resilience.io is used to develop ‘a pipeline of bankable projects’ with performance metrics that are presented to the UDIF which channels global investments towards the resilient growth of sustainable city-regions. The platform will build evidence to attract public and private investment to de-risked climate adaptation and mitigation projects that achieve economic, social and environmental goals within resilient inclusive development.
Description: 
The objective is to simulate a functioning society as a set of human, ecological and business activities within the chosen city-region boundaries. While the model’s spatial scale is a city and its hinterland, it is also an open system with mass and energy flows from and to the outside world. This gives insights into cross border resource use giving a true picture of global impacts of consumption activities within the city-region. The platform contains a growing library of process models of typical human, industrial and ecological systems, the relevant ones of which are used in a local instance to create a tailored integrated systems model for a city-region. Installing a local version of the model allows communities to manage both their economy and its critical supporting ecosystems on the basis of integrated systems insights. Resilience.io allows city-regions to assess their current development path, taking account of the risks of climate change, resource scarcity and events and map out a more sustainable and resilient pathway. It is a tool for testing possible scenarios and driving towards a holistic set of social, environment and economic goals. resilience.io is designed to support regional investment and performance based procurement in resilient growth with the governance and metrics that planners, designers and investors need. In Greater Accra Metropolitan Area stakeholders are contributing to the development of the first prototype focussed on resolving some of the toughest challenges facing the urban area in water and sanitation. In Ulaanbaatar the Mayor has signed up to use resilience.io to help to judge to what extent proposals in transportation, land-use, energy, water and waste will achieve the ecological masterplan which has been enshrined in national law. The platform forms the core of our approach of supporting transformational change through integrated thinking and collaboration.
Impacts: 
The platform’s first phase is under development with funding from the UK Government Department for International Development and a prototype will be demonstrated for the Water and Sanitation sector in the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area in Ghana in May 2016. This is the first of a number of demonstrator city-regions established. During this time, we have also established significant partnerships that support this initiative – WUC, UNSDSN, UNISDR, GPSDD, GEO, JWP Resilient Cities, UNCDF, C40, Rockefeller 100 resilient cities and World Bank. We have a rapidly growing social media following with 1.5m reach over 2015.