Cities on the Frontline: SMEs and Urban Resilience, Delivering a Resilient Economic Recover


Oct 28, 2021


09:00 AM



Event Summary
The Covid-19 pandemic lockdown measures have had devastating effects on jobs and local economies, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs). A survey of R-Cities Chief Resilience Officers in 2020 confirmed that city leadership are prioritizing social equity and local economy enhancement as they think about a resilient recovery beyond the pandemic. While SMEs have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic, they play a vital role in both responding to the crisis and propelling a sustainable and resilient recovery.
This 18th session of Cities on the Frontline, jointly organized by Resilient Cities Network and the World Bank and co-hosted by the Citi Foundation, will focus on “SMEs and Urban Resilience: Delivering a Resilient Economic Recovery” in the context of the partnership with the Citi Foundation as part of the Catalyzing City Resilience Solutions program. Join us to learn more about the importance of SMEs for a city’s economy and how cities can collaborate with their local SMEs for a resilient and equitable recovery.
Featured Event Speakers
This session will feature Amit Dhawan, Managing Director and Asia Head of Emerging Corporates at Citi Commerical Bank, as the opening speaker who will discuss the importance of supporting SMEs and how Citi and Citi Foundation are contributing to cities’ resilient recovery. We also welcome Dr. Jose Di Bella from the University of Waterloo, Canada who will present about his work on TRANSFORM’s timely and pertinent report: “Sustainable business practices can build resilient local economies for a post-COVID-19 recovery.”
This session will also feature the state and role of SMEs in a resilient urban recovery and showcase perspectives from Melaka, Malaysia and Semarang, Indonesia. Zuhaila Ahmad Zubel, Director of Town Planning Department, Melaka Historic City Council will reflect on Melaka’s vision for SME resilience and how supporting SMEs along the Melaka River can revive economic activities and community spaces. Dr. Artiningsih Msi, Senior Lecturer, University of Diponegoro, Semarang will share initial findings on how the pandemic has affected Semarang’s ‘batik’ sector – a traditional Javanese method of dyeing fabric, the relationship between the city and the batik sector, and how important planning a resilient recovery is for the economy, environment and identity of Semarang.
Cities on the Frontline Speaker Series is a weekly speaker series co-organized by the Global Resilient Cities Network and the World Bank City Resilience Program since March 2020. The purpose of the series is to share knowledge to help cities respond to the pandemic crisis and plan towards recovery with resilience.
Questions about the Speaker’s Series, additional registration requests, or related items can be directed to
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