Measuring the Resilience of Cities: the Role of Big Data

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This conference will examine how Big Data can be used to improve resilience of UK Cities as they face demographic and socioeconomic changes.

UK Cities need to be resilient to a wide range of threats and hazards, including natural disasters, terrorist attacks, economic crises and outbreaks of civil unrest. The very nature of cities is changing however; urban centres are becoming larger and more densely populated, the population is aging, with increasingly complex health needs, and the economy has shifted towards leisure and knowledge industries. As society changes, are the traditional indicators used to gather data and assess resilience
still valid?

Big Data provides opportunities to gather more information, more quickly. The way this data is collected and analysed provides opportunities to understand and map population demographics and socioeconomic trends; to monitor and model shifting urban landscapes; and to better understand changes in the use of transport networks, energy consumption and communications technology.

This has the potential to drive improvements in resilience, but do we really understand what we mean by resilience and what we need to measure in order to identify current and future indicators of good practice?

This conference will compare a number of methodologies currently in use, including that used by the UNISDR Resilient Cities initative, the World Economic Forum Global Risk reports and the European Smart Cities programme. It will discuss their value to assessments of UK resilience, and consider alternative approaches to measuring and assessing resilience.

This is part of an ongoing series of events organised by RUSI and the STFC; the previous conferences focused on Research Challenges in Antimicrobial Resistance, and Evidence-based data for assessing Community Tensions.

Sessions covered will include:

  • Perspectives on Resilience
  • Resilience Challenges in Urban Environments
  • Modelling Resilience

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Ann Lesperance, PNNL Team Lead for the DHS Collaboration on Research and Security (ColoRS) Project
  • Hamish Cameron, London Resilience Team
  • Professor Jeremy Watson CBE, Director of Global Research, Arup
  • Professor John Preston, University of East London
  • Charley Newman and James Crask, PriceWaterhouseCooper

This event is free to attend for Academia, Public Sector and Voluntary Organisations. Please note there is a fee of £100 + VAT for private sector employees to attend this event. To attend this event please click the 'book now' button above and for more information please contact Sabrina Downey, Project and Events Director, at or call +44 (0)20 7747 2622.


Main Image Credit Courtesy of estar2020/Adobe Stock

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