We live in a brittle society. Over 80 per cent of Britons live in urban areas relying on dense networks of public and private sector organisations to provide them with essential services. But our everyday lives and the national infrastructure work in a fragile union, vulnerable to even the smallest disturbances in the network. And both are part of a global ecosystem that is damaged and unpredictable.
How does Britain protect against these risks? Much of our infrastructure is outmoded and archaic. And with their narrow focus on emergency services and institutions, so are the policies that underpin it.
This pamphlet calls for a radical rethink of resilience. Instead of structures or centralised services, it argues that citizens and communities are the true source of resilience for our society. Using numerous case studies it highlights what policy makers can learn from people’s resourcefulness and points to new tools that can transform our ability to respond when disaster strikes.
Resilience is an everyday, community activity. It is people’s potential to learn, adapt and work together that powers it. Only by realising this potential will we succeed in building a resilient nation.