Centre for Contemporary Latin American Studies

Climate-smart Resilient Communities

Developing collaborative Smart City solutions to manage adaptation and monitoring Climate change related risks A Newton fund Institutional Links Grant

Co-created  Adaptation Solutions

In collaaboration with Universidad Iberoamerica Puebla, this project is rooted in understanding how the growth of Latin American cities in the last decades has led to an increase of vulnerable communities in informal settlements on land exposed to climate change-related risks, such as:

  • Extreme emperatures
  • Droughts
  • Flooding

This new scenatio demands to improve the resilience through developing innovative, co-created strategies to manage risk at the household level.

Smart City approaches offer an integrative perspective, establishing the potential for developing collaborative solutions involving city governments and technology contractors. However, these technological solutions tend to be dependent on top-down initiatives, which do not necessarily consider the needs of, or benefits for people living in poor informal communities.

The aim of this project is to identify climate change-related challenges and possible 'smart city' strategies, through implementing an interactive dialogue between:

  • Community members
  • Government institutions
  • NGOs
  • Private businesses

With a critical perspective and from a collaborative approach, 'smart city' strategies might bring innovative solutions that engage with

  • Communities
  • Academics
  • Technology contractors 
  • Local authorities

The project will explore innovative, context-specific and co-created strategies for managing risk and increase resilience, responding to the needs of the most vulnerable, through two scoping pilot studies, one in Mexico City and in the other in a semi-rural area in Puebla. Working at the macro-scale and the local scale, the research will provide, along with knowledge on community-based best practices, opportunities for interaction and negotiation between actors.