Ask 100RC about The Challenge

Read these questions and answers in العربية, 汉语, français, português, Русский, or español

With the third round of the 100 Resilient Cities Challenge now open, we’ve been getting a lot of great questions about the application, 100RC’s approach to building urban resilience, and more. “Ask 100RC” answers those questions, roughly once a month through the end of The Challenge.

Let’s start with some of the most common questions thus far, answered in all seven Challenge supported languages (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish).

Question One

What’s your advice to cities who applied, previously and are looking to reapply?

My city submitted an application last year. Can you provide feedback on how to improve it? In other words, tell us how to submit a better entry this time around.

First, we are thrilled to hear you’re applying again. We definitely encourage cities that were not chosen in previous rounds to submit another application. The application process over the past two years has been extremely competitive; we received more than 700 applications and only chose 67 cities. Many great applications weren’t chosen simply because 100 Resilient Cities didn’t have the capacity to work with them in our first two years, not because of deficiencies in the application.

While we cannot offer individualized feedback, we pulled together some guidelines to help cities prepare the strongest application possible:

1. Give evidence to support your selected shocks and stresses.

Numbers are compelling, as are projections and specific qualitative examples of how your city is affected by the shocks and stresses you selected.

2. Share how addressing these shocks and stresses will impact your city.

Don’t assume we understand the implications of addressing your city’s shocks and stresses. Be explicit about the potential impact in your city, and beyond to your region and country. Be sure to share any potential cascading, positive effects that might occur as a result of addressing these shocks and stresses in a resilient manner.

3. Tell the story of your partnerships.

We want to hear about current and potential partnerships, including academic, private sector, and NGO support. We also want to know how different ministries and departments plan to work together on a resilience strategy.

4. Show commitment and understanding in your Letter of Support.

A thoughtful, detailed, enthusiastic Letter of Support penned by the city’s chief executive officer sure goes a long way. Show us why you belong in the Network.

5. Describe how your challenges are interconnected.

Resilience is in part about recognizing how challenges that may seem distinct (eg Crime and education; or Climate Change and Poverty) are often deeply interconnected.  Making this link in your application helps us understand your resilience thinking.

Question Two

Is the application process different this year?

We heard that there is an easy re-application process for cities that applied in 2014. How should my city go about reapplying (especially if the person who led the process last year is no longer on the team)? Also, has the 2015 application changed?

We saved your information from last year and are offering a simple re-application process to 2014 entrants. Here is everything you need to know to reapply:

Start by heading to 100resilientcities.org/challenge and following the instructions to reset your password using the “Forgot Password” form. Using the email address of the person who led the application process and the new password provided to you, login and update your entry.

If you no longer have access to the aforementioned email address, or if you are unable to log back into your entry for any other reason, don’t hesitate to email challenge@100resilientcities.org for help.

Once you are in, you will notice a few minor things have changed. These adjustments are listed below so that you can properly address each item and easily submit your application:

  • Include the relevant Organization(s) in Question 1,
  • Update all phone numbers throughout the application,
  • Review the shocks and stresses to ensure you selected the best options, and
  • Read new questions we added to the Challengte FAQ (see: 7.1, 8.2, 12.1, 13.1) that will allow your city to tell us even more about your past and future resilience efforts.

Finally: be sure to attach an updated letter of support from your chief executive officer, signed during the 2015 Challenge period (July 21 to November 24, 2015).

Question Three

How big of a grant does a city receive if selected?

$164 million dollars is a significant commitment to resilience. But what will we get? How much money will The Rockefeller Foundation give to our city if selected?

Through 100 Resilient Cities, selected cities are eligible to receive membership in the 100 Resilient Cities Network, support to hire a Chief Resilience Officer, technical support from global experts to create a holistic resilience strategy, and tools and resources to advance the city’s resilience thinking and implement initiatives from the city’s strategy, helping to leverage additional millions.

There is not a set amount of money that each city will receive, since the cost of the benefits – like the CRO – will vary from city to city. Therefore, it is important to note that cities will not be receiving a check for $1 million. The benefit of being one of the 100 global leaders in a new movement to build urban resilience cannot be quantified; the support and partnership your city will receive from 100RC, platform partners, strategy partners, global resilience experts, and other cities across the network far surpass  $1M.

Have more questions? Send them to challenge@100resilientcities.org before September 15th with the subject line “Ask 100RC.” You’ll either see a response hit your inbox within the week or view your query in the next edition of 100RC.