Political Will Key to Making Cities Resilient


Making cities resilient is only possible when leaders have the political will to press ahead with initiatives, said experts at the Asian Development Bank's (ADB) third Southeast Asia Development Symposium (SEADS). 

In one of the event's discussion panels, "The Future of Sustainable Cities," officials from the local governments of West Java in Indonesia and Penang in Malaysia stressed the importance of having political leaders who can implement initiatives and make policy changes that will ensure cities are livable.  

The panel also looked into policy actions and responses, financing options, digital solutions, and other innovations that can help Southeast Asia build more livable cities.


  • Moderator: Lauren Sorkin, Executive Director, Resilient Cities Network
  • Zairil Khir Johari, State Executive Councilor for Infrastructure and Transport, Penang State Government, Malaysia; State Assemblyman, Tanjong Bunga
  • Ridwan Kamil, Governor, West Java, Indonesia
  • Ilaria Chan, Chairperson, Tech for Good Institute
  • Ramesh Subramaniam, Director General, Southeast Asia Department, ADB

SEADS 2022 took place on 16–17 March, with the theme, "Sustainable Solutions for Southeast Asia's Recovery."

SEADS is an annual flagship event organized by ADB.

Watch SEADS 2022 videos.