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Research at the Resilient Cities Laboratory

The Resilient Cities Laboratory draws together applied research from across the social sciences with a focus on the future challenges facing urban areas.

Our research is grouped around the following interlocking themes:

  • Planning and design which involves a range of activities which shape and manage the built fabric so as to reduce its vulnerability to a range of hazards and threats. Here we are concerned with both the spatial form and redesign of the built environment as well as the processes that help shape it
  • Critical Infrastructure and its resilience that focuses upon building capacities in technical, social and organisational resources, so as to mitigate as far as possible impacts of disruptive events on assets, systems, and networks, whether physical or virtual that are considered essential for the functioning of a society and economy
  • Smart cities and the use of ICT to enhance the quality, performance and interactivity of urban services, to reduce costs and resource consumption and to improve engagement between citizens and government

Current Research Projects:


HARMONISE (A Holistic Approach to Resilience and Systematic Actions to Make Large Scale Urban Built Infrastructure Secure) runs between 2013 and 2016 and is funded by the Seventh Framework Programme of Research (FP7) the EU. The central aim of HARMONISE is to develop a comprehensive, multi‐faceted, yet mutually‐reinforcing concept for the enhanced security, resilience and sustainability of large scale urban built infrastructure and development.

Researchers: Jon Coaffee, Jonathan Clarke and Rob Rowlands

HARMONISE is supported by funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no 312013


RESILENS (Realising European ReSiliencE for CritIcaL INfraStructure) runs between 2015 and 2018 and is funded by the Horizon 2020 Programme of Research of the EU.

Moving resilience from a conceptual understanding to applied, operational measures for critical infrastructure so that it is capable of withstanding, adapting and recovering from adverse events, that integrate best practice from the related realm of risk management is the focus of the RESILENS project.

Researchers: Jon Coaffee, Jonathan Clarke, George Christou and Rob Rowlands

RESILENS is supported by funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme, under Grant Agreement no 653260.