With nearly 80% of the city below sea level and one of the largest ports in the world, Rotterdam has built up centuries of experience when it comes to resilience, particularly on the topics of integrated water management and innovative climate adaptation. Rotterdam’s efforts are still being undertaken with an eye towards the flood of 1953, which killed almost 2,000 people and caused widespread property damage. It was an event that underscored the destructive power of the sea, and spurred the modern flood management industry in the country. In 2007, this Dutch city announced its ambition to become 100% climate-proof by 2025 — able to continue functioning economically and socially with minimal disturbance under any extreme weather situation.
In order to share our knowledge and learn from others, Rotterdam is part of ‘100 resilient Cities’. An organisation that helps cities around the world to become more resilient to the physical, social, and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. The focus is Urban resilience. The capacity of individuals, communities, institutions, businesses, and systems within a city to survive, adapt, and grow no matter what kinds of chronic stresses and acute shocks they experience.