The book presents results of CLUVA (CLimate Change and Urban Vulnerability in Africa), a large European Commission funded research project (2010-2013). The project aimed to develop a better understanding of the risks and impacts of climate change related hazards to African cities, assess their vulnerability to these risks, and identify innovative strategies for planning and governance to increase their resilience. For the first time, a systematic and groundbreaking study of this kind was applied in an inter- and trans-disciplinary approach. CLUVA was unique in that it combined: a top-down perspective of climate change modeling with a bottom-up perspective of vulnerability assessment; quantitative approaches from engineering sciences and qualitative approaches of the social sciences; a novel multi-risk modeling methodology; strategic approaches to urban and green infrastructure planning with neighborhood perspectives of adaptation.
The book broadly follows the approach taken in the CLUVA project. First, the combined pressures of urbanisation and climate change on the African continent and the potential impacts these will have on cities are illustrated. Then, the vulnerability of three main elements of the urban system is explored: built structures and infrastructures, urban ecosystems and people. Rich material from five case studies is provided for in-depth discussion of the factors that make these elements vulnerable to climate change, while alternatives for increasing their adaptive capacity are outlined. Another section is dedicated to the role of urban planning and governance for climate change adaptation, which is approached from diverse perspectives. Finally, the different dimensions of the CLUVA project are synthesised to develop an outlook on future coping strategies for urbanisation and climate change in African cities. Leading researchers in the fields of vulnerability and urban planning have been invited to contribute complementary chapters. Thus, the book should be of wide interest to scholars in the field of urban vulnerability and climate change.