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Boston Receives Rockefeller Award

“Help cities around the world become more resilient to the physical, social, and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century” ~Rockefeller Foundation

From tragedy to triumph, Boston provides a model of great progress birthing from devastation. The walking city made headline news again, but this time in an announcement of positive dividends. Boston was awarded a position in Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities initiative (100RC), and joined a world team for resilient and growing communities. Resilience is about moving beyond surviving, and onto thriving. It is 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. In 2013, 12 seconds and 210 yards apart, three bombs exploded and the effects will remain forever ingrained in my memory. Now, Bostonians show the fierce perseverance & resilience that has sustained this Eastern culture through many rocking challenges. In an effort to create a reciprocating collective, to preserve and intensify such level of resilience and resourcefulness, the Rockefeller Foundation invented and completely financed a novel grant award that will likely serve to change how we view the world, and our parts in sustaining it. ~The ultimate pay off of cerebral crowdfunding.

Related: On The Table - Community Collaboration in Chicago

The 100RC grant awards each member city a fund to hire a Chief Resilience Officer and access to the collective knowledge of innovative and strategic public and private sector resources. Financing one “position" in each city, and connecting resources will result in the crowdfunding of knowledge and camaraderie at a level the world hasn't experienced, at least not in my generation.

Boston's First Chief Resilience Officer

Prepare, withstand and bounce back! On August 10th, 2015 Mayor Walsh named Dr. Atyia Martin as Boston’s Chief Resilience Officer and she has a POL Atyia Martinposition as vast and inspiring, as the depth of community it serves. Martin is responsible for ensuring Boston’s resilience of social, economic, and physical challenges, while propelling the communities into a sustainable future, and teaming world resources. The 100RC think-tank-type team will collectively
devise and aid systems that prevent the effects of disasters where they can, and to best respond to those that they cannot. From Natural Disasters to terrorism, Boston has become part of a team of states, together ensuring long-lasting resilience in the face of the Chronic Stressors and Acute Shocks that have become commonplace in the 21st century.

Growing Communities Challenged

There are two challenges that inspire, destroy or completely halt growing growing communities, revitalizing communities, chronic stressors and shockscommunities, no matter on which side of the globe they sit.

  1. "Chronic Stresses" whether felt daily, or cyclically, erode the wherewithal of communities. High unemployment, rampant violence, and chronic food and water shortages have become part of life as we currently know it.
  2. "Acute Shocks" such as natural disasters, disease outbreaks, and terrorist attacks threaten cities not just from the mere shock and severity, but from a tendency to become comfortable in our own circles, without thought of what affects others. When we prepare our neighbors we prepare ourselves.

Boston: Problems, or Opportunities?

Growing communities are fueled by the creating and sustaining progress.
While Boston is as much regarded for their innovation as their socio-economic disagreements, resilience has never been lost. It is far too easy for human nature to focus on the problem and wallow, while missing the solution. Boston has chosen to prioritize water management and social cohesion & equality in the progress that they create, to share with the rest of the 100RC team. I look forward to the progress of Martin, teamed with powerful Bostonian communities. When focused on solutions and collective innovation, city-progress becomes state-wide progress, and state-wide progress becomes national progress. Until the collaboration of individually growing communities changes the world.  How do you define resilience? The 100 Resilient Cities initiative outlines it well:

  1. Reflective, Using experience to inform future decisions.
  2. Resourceful, recognizing alternate ways to use resources.
  3. Robust, Well-conceived, constructed, and managed systems.
  4. Redundant, Spare capacity purposely created to accommodate disruption
  5. Flexible, willingness and ability to adopt alternative strategies in response to changing circumstances.

Boston is one of 67 cities awarded, thus far and 100RC recently launched the "third and final round of the 100 Resilient Cities challenge". Cities can apply here to become part of the final team of cities in the global network that will total 100 cities working toward social, economic and physical change. Cerebral crowdfunding can be a precursor to financial crowdfunding.

What do you see becoming a real estate crowdfunding opportunity rising from Boston's economic growth to be created from the Rockefeller Foundation award?

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2 thoughts on “Boston Receives Rockefeller Award”

  • Laurie Marx

    Laurie Marx commented September 7, 2015

    Fascinating! How is it that such an incredible program exists and the whole country is not aware of this opportunity? Thank you for this inspiring article and for spreading the word.

    Karen Perkins

    Karen Perkins reply September 24, 2015

    Mrs. Marx, That is an excellent question. We all have the power to brainstorm change, while recruiting others in each area of expertise to carry it out. We have seen the positive effects of crowdplanning in many venues. I am anxious to see what comes from the project. I'll keep you posted.

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