ABOUT THIS ISSUE
Rapid urbanization has emerged as an undeniable global trend. Ever since 2008, more people in the world live in urban areas than in the countryside. In 2014 alone, 54% of the world's population resides in urban areas.
This puts an extraordinary level of pressure on urban centres which account for only 2.8% of the world's land area. All these facts point to the distending of urban infrastructure and services beyond their carrying capacity. This leaves these urban areas highly vulnerable to new risks. India's urban infrastructure too is at risk with a projected surge in the number of its urban dwellers reaching 404 million by 2050.
This issue of Southasiadisasters.net focuses on the Challenges of Urban Resilience in India. As repeated disasters have struck India's urban centres, new risks and vulnerabilities have emerged. Weak institutional frameworks and gross social inequalities make the urban centres of the country particularly susceptible to the adverse impacts of disasters. Climate change has added another level of complexity to the mire of existing vulnerabilities. In this context, this issue tries to explore underlying facts, observable trends and the projected impacts of these urban risks and their implications on urban resilience in India.
The scope of this issue ranges from the missing aspects in India's urban resilience to the underlying risks to marginalized groups inhabiting Indian cities. Topical and meticulously researched, this issue of Southasiadisasters.net underscores all major challenges that India faces in its pursuit of urban resilience.
– Kshitij Gupta, AIDMI