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What is Resilience?

Resilience is the ability to withstand, recover from, and adapt to periodic shocks and major disruptions. Bolstering resilience at multiple levels requires fostering a culture of preparedness and resourcefulness in the face of growing turbulence. Building greater resilience is an urgent imperative for more effectively coping with human-made and naturally occurring disasters as well as sustaining public trust and confidence in the critical foundations that underpin free democratic societies and open competitive economies.

At the individual level, resilience involves identifying and nurturing the capacity to cope with the myriad stresses that life inevitably brings. At the societal level, resilience involves identifying and nurturing the capacity for governments, metro-regions, communities, and private-sector entities to understand and better manage increasingly interconnected and interdependent systems that elevate the risk of wide-reaching and cascading failures when placed under stress.

The Global Resilience Institute strives to overcome the five major barriers to achieving greater resilience.

  1. There is widespread risk illiteracy and limited understanding of the new dependencies and interdependencies that pervade our increasingly connected lives;
  2. There are inadequate designs for embedding resilience into key systems, networks, and infrastructure;
  3. There are inadequate economic incentives for investing in proven resilience measures;
  4. There are inadequate governance frameworks and policy guidance to foster resilience;
  5. There is a lack of adequate interdisciplinary training and education programs to support the development and implementation of comprehensive capabilities for advancing resilience.

GRI is committed to organizing and leading partnerships with the world’s top universities, research centers, organizations, and professionals who share a common commitment to undertaking resilience-related research, in collaboration with national laboratories, public agencies, foundations, corporations, and non-governmental organizations.