The 5 Disruptive Solutions for Climate Resilience

Overview In addition to helping with occasional natural disasters, resilience solutions can address climate-related challenges, from ensuring the reliability and safety of housing, water, food and power to addressing migration and refugee issues fueled by climate change, as well as rising climate-related pollution and health risks.

According to Smart Cities Dive, a publication by Industry Dive that focuses on in-depth insight on trends shaping cities and municipalities, advanced technologies can be tapped for climate resilience solutions.

The current landscape is ready for five major areas of disruption:

  • Disruption of the development process. Forward-looking tech companies are starting to prioritize collaborative development of technologies with universities, governments, manufacturers and populations in the nations most at risk. Too often, climate resilience solutions are developed with little or no direct engagement with these future partners and markets.

  • Disruption of context. So far, few technology developers travel to, or spend much time in, the regions where their solutions could be deployed. Often, such travel is viewed as a difficult expense, rather than as an investment in product and market development. Substantial on-the-ground experience can deepen developers’ understanding of both the challenges and opportunities for climate resilience solutions, paving the way for creativity and innovation.

  • Disruption of pricing and market strategies. Many technology companies are accustomed to earning relatively high profits from the world’s more affluent customers. Expanding sales to non-government organizations (NGOs), as well as national or local governments, will require adaptations to their business and marketing processes. These entities, rather than consumers, are more likely to be their direct customers for climate resilience solutions.

  • Disruption of capacity distribution. Vulnerable nations already possess considerable on-the-ground knowledge, but usually they can’t rebound easily from disaster. This keeps them mired in the mindset of disaster response. When they’re supported in progressing beyond disaster response, they can adopt a risk-management mindset about climate resilience. That shift can spark the growth of in-country capacities to innovate affordable, practical solutions — which, in turn, yields better technology development partners and stronger markets.

  • Disruption in how vulnerable nations seek solutions. By building a presence in the global tech community, especially at key technology industry events, governments of at-risk nations or cities can appeal directly to solutions providers. Through direct interaction, they can explain their needs and provide clear options for how solution providers might do business with them.

Smart Cities Dive’s report "Disruptive Tech for Climate Change Resilience," which will be published in late November, will discuss how companies and governments who embrace these disruptions will reap benefits, as well as how the hefty price tags on these solutions affect their adoption.

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