INFOBASE / Key Concepts

Theory of Change

Key Messages

Research Framework and Design


      • Downscaled climate projections indicate warming in the three metropolitan cities by the end of the 21st century. While rainfall volume is uncertain, the probability of heavy rainfall and the frequency of drought events are projected to increase.
      • PM2.5 exposure of jeepney drivers, and other street-based income earners like women and street children vendors, who are the most exposed; and identifying locations of transport micro-environments that have very high fine particulate pollution.
      • While there is cumulative evidence on the incidence of dengue and leptospirosis per increase in climate change indicators (i.e., annual temperature, humidity, and rainfall) in the barangay and city-level, risk recognition among health officials is very low; thus, missing the opportunity to reinvent existing health policies and program designs towards climate resilience.


      • Social vulnerability in relation to climate change is contextually driven and evolving.  The most common components of vulnerability across all cities in Metro Manila can be categorized into three principal components: (1) social structure (i.e., age, civil status, sex, education status), (2) housing materials (i.e., houses with makeshift roofs and walls, dilapidated housing units), and (3) housing tenure (i.e., renting status of people, with or without consent). Across all cities, the groupings of these variables changed over the years. Disability and land tenure were dimensions of vulnerability added in more recent years by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). The evolving vulnerabilities and capacities of people/communities in Metro Manila need to be factored in during risk profiling, resilience-driven planning, and in the investments of LGUs and private sector

In Naga City, socially vulnerable households are characterized by three principal components that account for 65.8% of the total variance. These include: (1) economic incapacity, (2) dependency, and (3) waste management and flood risk.

In Iloilo City, social vulnerability components relative to climate change-related stressors like drought, flooding, storm surges, and COVID 19 include: (1) dependency ratio, (2) sex, (3) disability, (4) access to water, (5) housing materials, and (6) population and population density. Social vulnerabilities of coastline communities are compounded by the effects of slow-onset events (e.g., sea level rise) and technological hazards (e.g., oil spill).

      • Extreme rainfall adversely affects the welfare of households.   For both  income and expenditure, extreme rainfall has a negative and significant effect, suggesting that it lowers household income more pronouncedly in the  informal sector than in the formal sector. While households in the formal sector have larger incomes and have more to lose than households in the informal sector, the adverse impact on informal households may be irreversible given their capacity to recover, and their inability to smooth out consumption even during days with normal rainfall. In Metro Manila, women-headed households suffer more damages and losses compared to those headed by males; they also incur higher expenditures in obtaining basic services before, during, and after flooding events.
      • Street-based populations/income earners understand and recognize pollution and pollutants differently from the scientific community. Street-based populations have interconnecting and hierarchical levels of risks and hazards, with economic and political risks deemed as more detrimental, while climate and disaster risks and hazards are considered as manageable. When shown the effects of air quality on their health (e.g., increased blood pressure and palpitation rates), jeepney drivers were more worried about the potential loss of their livelihoods due to the government’s jeepney modernization program, than the impacts of air quality on their health.


      • Risk visualization, as an area of research and innovation,  is an important tool for transdisciplinary applications.  Risk maps produced for Metro Manila, Naga City, and Iloilo City revealed the exposed entities across space, having varying levels of vulnerabilities. Through risk mapping, the possible extent of selected hazards such as temperature, rainfall, tropical cyclones, flood, and storm surges, together with their associated hazards, were visualized and used for transdisciplinary analysis. This informed decision-making in the climate and disaster risk assessments (CDRA) in the cities of Iloilo and Naga, which in turn informed development planning and investments. It is critical that risk assessments are updated and visualized. Dynamic spatio-temporal platforms can support decision-making  by providing a common operating platform for early warning and medium- to long-resilience. 
      • Systems dynamics transformed from theory to operational tools that inform policy and practice.  In an attempt to make systems dynamics more functional, the Integrated Urban Services Resilience Index (IUSRI) Model, which combines the Urban Ecosystem Resilience Index (UERI) and the Socio-Economic Resilience Index (SERI), and the City Resilience Toolkit (CResT) were developed by CCARPH researchers. In partnership with the LGUs of Pasig City and Valenzuela City, these decision-support tools/models were used to analyze the urban ecosystem resilience of these cities.
      • Economic tools of analysis localized to project climate change impacts on local economies. Using the dynamic CGE (computable general equilibrium) model calibrated to city-level SAM (social accounting model),  the research improved on past attempts to model a city-level economy. A SAM was created from the LGU database of firms and shocks were computed from the regression analysis of climate and economic variables.  
      • Climate and disaster risk and resilience analysis informs the crafting of responsive resilience innovations.  The creation of disaster-related technologies that are transferable to communities enable them to capacitate themselves, whether it be for disaster preparedness or response. CCARPH-AIC has installed disaster-related technologies with partner LGUs, schools/universities, and the private sector through partnerships, capacity building, and transfer of technologies.


      • Applying risk and resilience analytics in governance requires the identification of policy support for mainstreaming resilience, including systems thinking and transdisciplinary pathways. Through the exploratory policy analysis for Transformative Leadership for Adaptive and Productive (LEAP)  Local Government Units, entry points for risk and resilience governance that were supported by policy mandates became the foundation for CCARPH’s collaboration with the private sector (via the NRC partnership), the LGUs, and other stakeholders. Building on the gains of the CCAR (2012-2016),  CCARPH  examined how systems thinking for climate and disaster resilience  can be embedded and mainstreamed into development planning structures and processes at the national and local levels.  All these factors facilitated science-informed capacity building and resilience planning that found its way not only in the Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Plans (LDRRMP) but more importantly, in the overall development plans and budgets of LGUs.

The application of intersectionality and transdisciplinarity for resilience are necessary.  However, any application of such principles must recognize that they are contextually-driven

Intersectionality in the academe and scientific institutionsmeans making systems thinking more functionally integrated among different disciplines.  In the context of risk governance, systems thinking has to be reflected through the interaction between the development pillars of governance: physical, social, economic, environmental, and institutional.  Risk and resilience analysis was then mainstreamed into the development planning and budgeting processes through the CDRA capacity-building process.   These are then reflected in the CDRA and in the crafting of development plans of LGUs such as the Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) in Iloilo, and the barangay resilience plans in Naga.  

Transdisciplinarity in the academe requires (1)  interdisciplinary work and engaging other stakeholders; (2) retooling and training resilience champions in the policy and practice sectors through MDRR and its partners; and (3)  innovations for and with communities at risk.  In risk governance, transdisciplinarity demands inclusion of non-traditional resilience actors such as  the private sector, and civil society

Strategic multi-stakeholder engagements enhance risk analysis and resilience planning and implementation:  In the context of CCARPH, the work on CDRA provided a platform for engagement between scientists, local government bureaucracy and decision-makers, and other stakeholders. The CDRA informed the preparation of development plans and budgets of LGUs  and even influenced the design of COVID-19 pandemic measures for resilient recovery in some cities e.g., Iloilo, Naga, and Ormoc.


The project’s direct contributions to climate and disaster resilience in the Philippines are the (1) characterization of hazards, (2) assessment of exposure, vulnerability, and capacity, (3) enhancement of climate and disaster risk assessment, (4) development of City Resilience Suite of Tools, (5) training of resilience action leaders, and the (6) strengthening of public-private partnerships in the country. To fulfill impact-level change, the project identifies major areas that orient the aims for 2018-2020. These include the advancement of knowledge on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction for resilience, methodologies and tools for CCA-DRR, and the enhancement of adaptive capacity, and the accomplishment of knowledge transfer and mobilization in coastal cities in the Philippines.

Through a transdisciplinary and multi-stakeholder approach, these outcomes catalyze changes and advance resilience through systems thinking actions, reducing disaster risk and losses, and improving coastal cities capacity to develop science-informed resilience plans and budgets. These plans contribute to the overall prioritization and commitment to climate and disaster resilience in the Philippines. The full achievement of such outcomes, however, will not be solely attributable to the project but also from the combined and collaborative initiatives of ADMU, IDRC-Canada, NRC, MO, ADNU, UPV, and the LGUs of Quezon City, Valenzuela City, Pasig City, Muntinlupa City, Iloilo City, and Naga City, with internal and external stakeholders, including those in government, civil society, the private sector, and the communities themselves.

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