top view of building with trees

CDRI Fellows: Shaping the Future of Resilient Infrastructure

11 November, 2022

The Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) Fellowship Programme was launched in September 2020 with a vision to develop a global multi-disciplinary pool of future-ready professionals and practitioners who will help shape a resilient future for global infrastructure systems.

A 12-month seed grant, the Fellowship provides financial support as well as peer learning and capacity development opportunities to foster transformative, actionable and scalable solutions for real world issues related to disaster resilience of infrastructure. Promising solutions with demonstrated applicability and potential for scale, emerging from the Programme will be disseminated through the Coalition’s network and opportunities for their implementation across contexts will be identified. The value proposition of the CDRI Fellowship Programme lies in its potential to contribute to real solutions to real problems, while informing the larger discourse on resilient infrastructure.

For the first Cohort of the Fellowship Programme, CDRI received a total of 143 applications from 12 countries. Following a rigorous three-tier review and selection process, in March 2021, CDRI awarded Fellowships to 21 teams from nine countries including Afghanistan, Australia, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Peru, Thailand, United Kingdom, and United States of America.

Each team received a grant of US$ 10,000 to build upon their proposed solutions for emerging and existing issues related to resilience of infrastructure. The research projects represent a diverse mix from solutions ranging from strengthening road resilience using landslide susceptibility models, incorporating resilience in ports, using AI and machine learning to strengthen communications, monitoring river migration at sites of critical bridge infrastructure and developing future wetlands inventory for disaster risk reduction in the Himalayan region.

Cohort 2021-22 have completed their Fellowship with CDRI, demonstrating considerable progress in their research projects, despite challenging conditions including the Covid pandemic and geopolitical flux. Some of the actionable solutions emerging from this Cohort are summarized below:

During their Fellowship, in the true spirit of peer learning, some of the Fellows have driven a Community of Practice seeded within the Cohort, sharing knowledge and resources on topics related to resilience of infrastructure.

The CDRI Fellowship Programme continues to evolve; the second Cohort of Fellows (2022-23) comprising 14 teams from 11 countries was onboarded in July 2021 and is heading towards its second quarterly progress review. CDRI will soon be launching the call for applications for its third Cohort of Fellows. The Fellows, across Cohorts, past and present, form a vibrant global community of champions for resilient infrastructure and CDRI ambassadors, advocating for resilient infrastructure systems in a growingly uncertain future.

share this