Poornima Dore, Sruthi Parija and Simrat Swani

Developing Resilience Scenarios and Strategies through Participatory Simulations – Case of Metropolitan Chennai - Case Study 3


Coastal cities in India and across the world are being impacted by climate change in the form of heavy rains, cyclones and rising sea levels. Chennai, as we know, faced unprecedented flooding in 2015 and parts of the city were declared under drought in 2016. The need to respond to these challenges is clear and policymakers have access to large amounts of data for their planning processes. There are difficulties in aggregating and making such data actionable as policymakers also operate within existing institutional frameworks that are often fragmented, limiting the interaction across institutions and thereby impacting the nature and efficacy of decisions made. The consequences of policymakers’ decisions assume criticality given that they are responsible for performing essential public functions such as the supply of drinking water, maintenance of drainage systems, etc. Combined with specific challenges such as planning for a large and diverse set of stakeholders, the unprecedented speed of urban growth and corresponding effects on climate and the environment, a lack of support can harm lives and livelihoods of people. Therefore, there is a need to develop tools that help policymakers plan and react to on-the ground challenges in a timely manner. This case study prepared with inputs from Vaibhav Dutt and Srijan Sil, Researchers at Fields of View