Cities as Aid Agencies? Preliminary Prospects and Cautionary Signposts from Post-Disaster Interurban Cooperation in Asia

Chapter

Abstract

Anchored on network-based city-to-city cooperation, a relatively young and underexplored form of decentralized development cooperation, this chapter presents the experience of selected Asian cities in extending outbound relief and technical assistance and in promoting risk reduction measures outside their territorial boundaries. It specifically discusses six cases of cooperation under the umbrella of a city network: (a) Yokohama, Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Banda Aceh (2005–2008); (b) Makati and Kathmandu (2008); (c) Moratuwa, Galle and Yokohama (2005–2007); (d) Mumbai and Khulna (2009); (e) Yokohama and Bangkok (1997–2001); and (f) Yokohama, Islamabad and Muzaffarabad (2006–2009).

Lessons from these case studies indicate that network-supported inter-city cooperation has the potential to break down the traditional practice of development aid as being a North-South partnership. It also shows that while most of the partnerships involved local authorities as primary actors, cooperation has been enriched by the participation of a third partner such as a non-government organization, a municipal association or a research institute. The cases further demonstrate that city-to-city cooperation has provided a flexible mechanism for effecting changes at any point in the DRM cycle, that is, not just during the response phase. Some of the challenges faced by the cities and the city network in fostering inter-city cooperation include the need to: bring in more cities, especially small and intermediate cities, and actors into the partnership; augment funding at the network and city level; enhance the cooperation experience to be more inclusive; and strengthen monitoring and evaluation mechanisms.

Keywords

Cities Inter-city networks Cross-border disasters Decentralised disaster governance 

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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National College of Public Administration GovernanceUniversity of the PhilippinesQuezon City (NCR)Philippines

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