27 June 2022

Malmö gains UN designation of a Making Cities Resilient 2030 Resilience Hub

City and regional officials, policy makers, and UN staff came together at the ICLEI World Congress to celebrate the announcement that ICLEI Member Malmö (Sweden) has earned the designation of a Making Cities Resilient 2030 (MCR2030) Resilience Hub.

MCR2030 is a United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) initiative to support a network of cities in planning, implementing and monitoring disaster risk reduction actions. ICLEI Europe is part of its European Regional Coordination Committee, the MCR2030 Co-chair for Europe and Central Asia, and delivers technical support and guidance to cities.

MCR2030 member cities follow a three-stage roadmap to urban resilience that includes knowledge-sharing, monitoring, and reporting tools that support them to reduce risk and build resilience.

Malmö – which was heralded as Sweden’s most environmentally-friendly city in 2021, and which hosted ICLEI the World Congress – is the second city in Sweden to earn the UNDRR Resilience Hub designation. The honour recognises the city’s intentional and proactive approach to the mitigation of both current and expected climate-related environmental hazards. At the event, UNDRR lauded the city’s response to severe flooding in 2014, and its resulting coastal protection strategy. Also noteworthy is the city’s internal energy reduction target of 30% for city-owned buildings.

The announcement was followed by a panel discussion among representatives from existing and potential Resilience Hubs in Europe, South America, and Central America.

Isabel Roldau, Deputy Mayor of Recife (Brazil) shared her municipality’s work developing a Local Climate Action Plan, community capacity building projects, and a suite of conservation and restoration work supporting climate adaptation.

Susana Sousa Gonçalves, Head of Civil Protection Department, and Margarida Bento Pinto, Head of Environmental Monitoring Division, from the City of Matosinhos (Portugal) elaborated on their city’s 14 years of experience in resilience planning. Matosinhos has striven to raise awareness of environmental risks among youth, and has invested in maximising local technical capacity for effective emergency planning. Matosinhos’ commitment to collaboration stood out during the panel, with Susana Sousa Gonçalves explaining, “Our focus is not only on disaster risk management, but also climate change and sustainability. This is not possible if we work apart.” This work has been recognised: since the World Congress, Matoshinhos was announced as Portugal’s first Resilience Hub!

Helena Monteiro, from UNDRR’s MCR2030 Secretariat for Europe and Central Asia, tied the session together by underscoring the role of Hubs in facilitating peer-to-peer learning. She stressed that participation in MCR2030 is not only an accolade, but an opportunity to share local experiences developing holistic disaster risk reduction strategies that embed resilience into planning mechanisms. Resilient hubs also co-develop strategies for supporting other local governments in their journey towards resilient planning.

What’s next for Malmö? Deputy Mayor Simon Chrisander hopes that the city’s new role will bring Baltic municipalities together in a coordinated effort to increase disaster resilience: “We need to say to our voters, it is good to invest in resilience.”

Fortunately, Mamö has extensive experience working with fellow municipalities on climate adaptation and resilience. The city is, for example, a key part of the CLEVER Cities project, which makes use of nature-based solutions to build resilience, while centring community voices and involvement. ICLEI Europe also works with Malmö in its role in this project.

For more information about MCR2030 Resilience Hubs, visit: