What is City and The Cities: COVID19 Resilience?

ThinkThank and Media Series to present the real picture of COVID-19 impacting different sectors and regions.

ood City Foundation is launching a series of blogs and podcasts to bring out the real scenario of COVID19 outbreak in different cities around the world, it’s impact on different sectors and how the practitioners are handling the situation by bringing change in the way they work, the way they plan business, the way they plan cities and the suggested roadmap to help the economy to bounce back from the impact of the pandemic. This series will focus on bringing out the real scenario, learn from the stories and map out COVID19 Resilience plans for the cities and the sectors.

Bearing the organization DNA as a network of young leaders that cross cuts public policy, private sector and entrepreneurship focused on tackling complex urban issues, Future City Summit (FCS, now expanded into Good City Foundation or GCF) is dedicating this series to the various personas represented in our global network.

The series will reflect upon the insights from the policymakers and civil servants, to learn about the new qualities needed in public sector leaders to keep people and cities stick together. The series will move on to the 100+ entrepreneurs and businessmen in GCF who have to take on expanded responsibility to help industries withstand shocks. The media series will speak about new forms of leadership and managerial skills with C-suite executives and how they are ensuring their remote working teams do not fall apart. The series will also gather insights from civic society change makers and learn how to keep the advocacy spirits high when the world is in chaos.

This media series is not another article of high-level academic research. Rather, GCF would like to share best practices, up-to-date market intelligence and anecdotes we picked up when running GCF in the stressful times of COVID-19. We trust these insights have long-term implications to people who care deeply about future cities and future world. This differentiates GCF’s bottom-up approach, from other think tanks’ and institutions.

There are certain focus areas of the Media Series:

Global Context of COVID19: The rapid spread of the Virus and its impact in a Global context. Death of thousands of people, mass travel restrictions, border closure, country lockdowns, emergency public health enforcement and much more. Learning the global contexts and map out strategy for cross sector and cross border collaboration is a must now.

Policymakers: How COVID19 has called for changes in policies, how policymakers are coping up with the pandemic, how it is a time to call for emotional intelligence and innovation in the policy landscape.

Private Sector: Before COVID-19, companies enjoyed cheap liquidity and infinite access to suppliers or outsourcing contractors. And now, those who own strategic fixed assets quickly become winners. They can rapidly take over weak unproductive players and scale up production to fill in the severe shortage (e.g. medical essentials and basic food supply). Industry consolidation will accelerate much faster than expected. But the question is, how small and informal businesses will survive?

C-Suit Executives: How executives are coping up with the changing way of working, how business models are changed, what strategy is saving startups around the world from being devastated by the pandemic, what is the future of the workplace according to them. Learning from the practitioners and mapping out survival plans for startups globally is the key to bounceback.

The Civil Society Actors: Learning about the role of civil society to fight the pandemic, how art and entertainment is playing a role to make lockdowns more survivable, how social norms are changing, how the way we meet friends is becoming more virtual, how emotional intelligence will make people more resilient during this phrase, how its time for communities to come closer and work hand in hand with public and private sector to survive and rebuild.

The media series will also focus on the environmental impact of COVID-19, its psychological impact, impact on the education system and other sectors. The media series will focus on the importance of cross-border and cross-sector collaboration for which the organization has been working relentlessly since 2016. Is it time to scale up the pace for saving the world from the global crisis? The series will focus on each and every possible aspect and help to fight back after the bad dream ends.

Here is a poem written by an Irish Poet, Kathleen O’Meara in 1869- after a plague devastated Ireland in the late 1860's- How appropriate for today.

SOMETHING LOVELY

And people stayed home

and read books and listened

and rested and exercised

and made art and played

and learned new ways of being

and were still

and listened more deeply

someone meditated

someone prayed

someone danced

someone met their own shadow

and people started thinking differently — —

And people healed…

And in the absence of people who lived in ignorant ways

dangerous, mindless, and heartless….

The earth began to heal — -

And when the danger ended

and people found themselves…

They grieved for the dead

and they made new choices

and dreamed of new visions

and created new ways to live

and heal the earth fully

just as they had been healed.

Kathleen O ‘ Meara (1869)

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