Urban Resilience

Resilience is the capacity of an urban system for preventing and withstanding any possible danger or risk and for recovering from it.

Barcelona City Council is promoting a resilience model that works to build a city with more capacity for taking on the challenges of today and tomorrow, reducing vulnerabilities and proactively overcoming effects to ensure city residents’ quality of life.


  • Reducing the city's vulnerabilities through preventive actions that minimise the effects of any tensions that may arise, so the city is capable of withstanding them while maintaining its essential functions.

  • Providing the city with appropriate mechanisms for the early detection and evaluation of any risks that may need to be managed.

  • Working to improve the response capacity and minimise the impact and the recovery time it takes for the city to return to its original or equivalent state, when faced with crisis situations.

  • Providing useful information and tools for supporting the decision-making process — operational and strategic alike — on a comprehensive city scale.

Managing urban services is extremely complex owing to the multiple players involved in the process. Barcelona is working to construct the tools and organisational structures needed so that the city can be managed in the cross-cutting and intersectoral way required by an increasingly complex urban reality. This process has been consolidated through the creation of the Department of Urban Resilience in the municipal organisation chart, as part of the Urban Ecology area. (Deputy Manager's Office for Mobility and Infrastructures)

Collaborative work is also being carried out with international institutions working in this field, with the aim of fostering exchanges of experiences to contribute the visions, experiences and model developed by Barcelona. Such bodies include: UN-Habitat, with its headquarters in Barcelona, under the "City Resilience Profiling Programme"; UNISDR, as members of the "Making Cities Resilient" campaign, which recognised the city as a Role Model City for Infrastructures and Urban Services; the "100 Resilient Cities" programme, promoted by the Rockefeller Foundation and the C40 cities network.


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