Urban Resilience in Informality

Empowering climate-vulnerable communities, especially women, in informal settlements to develop sustainable, locally-led solutions using affordable materials

This programme puts the most climate vulnerable urban dwellers, those living in informal settlements, and specifically women – at the centre of design to develop locally-appropriate, community-based solutions. Working in tandem with the construction industry, engineers, and architects, the objective is to explore ways by which women’s networks can transform homes that can withstand extreme weather conditions, while also using affordable and locally-sourced materials.

GRP’s urban resilience engagement aims to create inclusive knowledge, innovation, and policy spaces that engage communities as the resilience experts and devolve decision-making and finance flows to the lowest appropriate level. This is in line with the Locally Led Adaptation Principles.

This programme includes the Roof Over Our Heads (ROOH) campaign, which aims to improve the lives of 2 billion climate vulnerable people living in informal settlements by 2050. Over the next four years, ROOH envisages two main elements: (1) expanding the learning labs; and (2) retrofitting households in alignment with resilient, carbon neutral vision and based on the outcomes of learning labs.

To date, the ROOH learning labs have showcased that larger established construction and design companies do not necessarily have expertise working with local materials, while the materials used in more formal/built-up settings have not been tested to fulfil the function and the needs of informal settlers living in a particular micro-climate. ROOH activities aim to address this and bridge the divide through a meaningful, co-productive approach.

We aim to incubate and support the development of ROOH, and mobilise the learnings into key global policy processes.