International agreements in three post-2015 agendas (the SDGs, the Sendai Framework for DRR and the Paris Agreement under the UNFCC) all call for resilience as a system property or concept to pursue. The concept is also increasingly adopted in policy contexts (like the Rockfeller 100 Resilient Cities and UNISDR), particularly related to climate change and water-related hazards. The FRG aims at advancing and disseminating scientific knowledge and practical application of resilience for flood and drought risk management.
How we work
FRG is involved in a number of research and capacity building projects. In the majority of these projects the innovations are developed together with local, regional, and national actors. This is an important feature of FRG, as it aims to actively participate in the design and implementation of flood (and drought) risk management strategies—while conducting research and building capacities. The ultimate goal of this approach is to provide evidence and guidance to stakeholders of effective strategies to reduce risk and enhance resilience.
To encourage the adoption of innovations, FRG has established Living Labs in three regions facing similar challenges: Sirajganj (BD), Alexandria (EG) and Dordrecht (NL). These labs have become focal points for stakeholder engagement, with a key role for local partners to co-design and co-develop research activities and to run joint education and training activities. Through these labs, FRG strives to enlarge the absorptive and innovation capacity of the involved stakeholders, but also to encourage PhD and MSc students to do interdisciplinary research.
Another important feature of FRG is its strong involvement in Dutch research and innovation programmes, including the Delta Programme. The Dutch water sector has always played a leading role internationally through its advanced knowledge, expertise and technology. IHE-Delft owes its very existence to the recognition of Dutch expertise in flood risk management. Today, in the Netherlands new approaches are being developed to help to ‘live with water’ and ‘build with nature’, which are also applicable in the Global South to mitigate the increasing numbers of flood disasters. FRG is strongly engaged with the Global Centre of Excellence on Climate Adaptation and the Delta Alliance to connect the Dutch water sector with the water sector in the Global South.
Research and innovation
Research and innovation focuses on two related lines:
- Water Sensitive Cities interact with the urban hydrological cycle in ways that: provide the water security essential for economic development; enhance and protect the health of watercourses and wetlands; mitigate flood risk and damage; and create public spaces that harvest, clean and recycle water.
- Water Hazard Resilient Cities are able to remain functioning under a range of hazard magnitudes (floods or drought), and to adapt and transform in the face of slow moving hazards (climate change).
FRG aims for cities to become learning organizations by engaging in city-to-city learning networks (e.g. BEGIN, City Deal). Many of the problems cities are facing are shared by other cities, even on the other side of the world. Often they have complementary strengths and weaknesses and by cooperating, they can offer reciprocal support and services. FRG facilitates city-to-city learning initiatives through its capacity development services. Read more here.