Urban resilience and urban sustainability : What we know and what do not know?

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

143 Scopus Citations
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-148
Journal / PublicationCities
Issue numberPart A
Online published30 Aug 2017
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018


The past literatures have studied both ‘urban resilience (UR)’ and ‘urban sustainability (US)’ in terms of the dual character - vulnerability and pertinacity - of cities. However, there is a large overlap between the meaning of resilience and sustainability, which threatens to weaken both concepts. In this study, we discuss the difference between urban resilience (UR) and urban sustainability (US) from three aspects of research trends, research scale and research clusters. CiteSpace 4.0.R5 is used for co-citation analysis, visualizing co-citation networks and research clusters. UR and US studies contrast in not only their different theoretical bases, but also even more in their empirical work. A conceptual framework is proposed to define the difference between UR and US, and four kinds of urban development are examined based on the framework. We indicate that rational urban development can be achieved only when it is both resilient and sustainable, and conclude that urban planners, policymakers and researchers should pay equal attention to both UR and US before decision-making.

Research Area(s)

  • CiteSpace, Urban resilience, Urban sustainability