Resilience and Urban Disasters
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Resilience and Urban Disasters

Surviving Cities

Edited by Kamila Borsekova and Peter Nijkamp

This book addresses unexpected disasters and shocks in cities and urban systems by providing quantitative and qualitative tools for impact analysis and disaster management. Including environmental catastrophes, political turbulence and economic shocks, Resilience and Urban Disasters explores a large range of tumultuous events and key case studies to thoroughly cover these core areas. In particular, the socio-economic impacts on urban systems that are subject to disasters are explored.
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Chapter 8: Urban resilience and the politics of scale

Mojgan Taheri Tafti


In this chapter the author looks at urban resilience against earthquakes in Tehran, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world exposed to major earthquakes. Examining a number of policies and practices aimed at enhancing resilience in the city, the author investigates the re-articulation of meaning and scale in translating resilience into urban policies and practices and the conflicts and contradictions they entail. The author focuses on the issues of determining the scale and delineating the boundaries of policy interventions for enhancing resilience and argues that the discursive, legal and representational construction of such boundaries are central to the politics of urban resilience. Considering the case of Tehran, the chapter demonstrates that the combination of an engineering understanding of resilience and a reliance on the private sector to enhance it in particular localities can be conducive to transferring vulnerability to other areas or other scales and raises serious concerns over the issue of justice and the right to live in a safe environment.

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