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What is equitable resilience? [sei.org]

The concept of resilience has gained prominence in recent years as a key goal of efforts to adapt to climate change and to reduce disaster risks. This view holds that while some stresses and shocks may be unavoidable, resilient societies will be better prepared to cope, recover and adapt – or even to make fundamental changes for transformation. Yet for all the interest
in resilience, it has been criticized for failing to account for power relations and how the complexity of social dynamics determines outcomes of environmental change and governance.

This discussion brief examines equity. Equity places focus on the needs of those who are disadvantaged by relations of power and inequalities of opportunity, and on how these barriers to human flourishing can be identified, understood and addressed. From this perspective, the apparent failure of resilience to attend to the distributive and power dimensions of environmental and development challenges limits the concept for analysis and practice.

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