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This working paper explores the many successful strategies and measures for climate resilience and low carbon development that communities and leaders have pursued at the subnational level. Drawing on the rich and practical experiences of CDKN’s project partners and the broader ICLEI network, it argues that the battle for climate compatible development will be won or lost in provinces, districts and cities. 
There are distinct challenges at subnational level– for example, future climate data for local and subnational levels is more uncertain than at larger scales, and subnational decision-makers face intense local pressure to act on the negative impacts of climate extremes and disasters. There are also unique opportunities. Subnational decision-makers often have a sound understanding of climate trends in their area, based on first-hand experience and local and indigenous knowledge. They have a good sense of solutions that are effective in the local context and they have the ability to mobilize local resources for implementation, including people’s time and knowledge.

Product Type
Knowledge & Learning
Focus Area
Climate Resilient Development
Low Carbon Development
Scope / Extension
Sub-national, Project, & Local/Community level
Methodological Steps
Spatial / Geographical Coverage Location
Current Version
April, 2014
System Requirements
File Size (for download)
2,5 MB
Contact Email
e-Learning available
e-Learning available
Facilitated Learning Avalable
Facilitated Learning Avalable