Understanding Urban Structures – An Approach for Assessing Climate Risk in Emerging Megacities
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ISSN der Zeitschrift
Proceedings of the 27th Conference on Environmental Informatics - Informatics for Environmental Protection, Sustainable Development and Risk Management
Modelling Environmental Systems
The emerging megacity of Ho Chi Minh City has developed at breakneck pace. The city has become Vietnam s economic powerhouse and an important hotspot for direct foreign investment in Southeast Asia in a mere few decades. Recently the need to adapt to the multiple stressors of rapid urbanisation and climate change has also become increasingly evident. The city is seen to be particular susceptible to both current and future impacts of climatic change, due to its specific geographic setting, its current development challenges, and its underlying rate of urbanisation. Worryingly, these climate change impacts, if unaddressed, pose significant consequences and present further challenges that will infringe upon the overall urban functioning and liveability of the city as a whole. This contribution will outline an urban structure type approach used to portray, classify and understand settlement patterns and the urban structures of the current and emerging landscapes of Ho Chi Minh City. An important prerequisite for establishing much needed efficient and proactive, as well as rapid, adaptation planning strategies is the spatial and rational characterisation of the current urban fabric according to vulnerability relevant features. Further, an understanding of urban settlement patterns and urban structures allows for the capturing of the highly dynamic spatiotemporal social and structural changes associated with rapid urbanisation processes. The ultimate aim is an integrated assessment of the underlying urban risk divide and the inherent urban resilience based on coherent and credible indicator sets. The approach provides a common spatial framework at the resolution of the urban block for data integration and for the compilation of existing vulnerability concepts from various thematic and scientific disciplines at the same spatial scale. The scale provides a clear instrument to generate portfolios of block-specific core indicators, move across scales, run scenarios and aggregate to larger planning horizons, ultimately useful to determine hotspots for administrative interventions and to assist prioritising in spatial planning decision-making.