Higher Ground

October 8, 2020 — Events

Climate change is already impacting cities around the world, including where people are moving and why, the housing and real estate markets, and nearly every aspect of life in cities. In partnership with the City of Orlando, NewCities is excited to launch our initiative, Higher Ground.

Through a virtual event format, we will explore and analyze climate adaptation, resilience, and politically off-the-table until recently, managed retreat away from coastlines, floodplains, and other high-risk areas. Convening public officials, policymakers, engineers, planners, real estate professionals, patient capital, and climate migrants, we will discuss how cities are leading the way and planning for a future inland.

The two-day virtual event featured high level keynotes, engaging panel discussions, and interactive workshops and networking. We convened our extensive network of public, private, non profit, and academic leaders – from Orlando and other cities in Florida, cities across the United States and Canada, and even international experts in climate migration.

Preparing North American cities for equitable migration will require new regulations and incentives to manage retreat; building new resilient districts nearby, and developing attraction strategies for “climate refugees” further inland. All three will require a broad coalition of public and private stakeholders. Our LIVE format is a great way to welcome experts from all sectors and geographies to convene and discuss the urgent and impending climate crisis, all while broadening the accessibility of our events.

What topics are covered?

Higher Ground aims to shape the conversation around cities and climate change by convening a global network of stakeholders to bring climate migration and managed retreat to the forefront of adaptation strategies; feature data-driven tools, tactics, projects, and policies for cities and public officials grappling with these challenges; and disseminate findings and successes through convenings, toolkits, and consultations to cities striving for transformation. We will explore when to adapt and when to retreat, planning for long-term, sustainable and equitable growth, financing new resilient infrastructure and communities, city-led business and migrant attraction strategies, and more.


In-Kind Partners