Engaging Citizens for Resilience: Media, Messaging and Relevance in Urban Zimbabwe
Keywords:urban, news, social responsibility, citizens, local authorities
The media is an integral part of society and an indispensable tool that allows citizens to make informed decisions and participate in everyday life through the production and dissemination of objective and professional news. Using the flexible and multi-disciplinary stakeholder definition which defines resilience as “ the ability of an urban system and all its constituent socio-ecological and socio-technical networks across temporal and spatial scales to maintain or rapidly return to desired functions in the face of disturbance, to adapt to change and to quickly transform systems that limit current or future adaptive capacity” (Meerow et al., 2016:39), this article assesses the relevance of media messaging on flooding in urban areas to promote urban resilience. Through a qualitative content analysis of selected news articles focusing on all urban areas in Zimbabwe, this article analyses how the stories on flooding helped promote urban resilience. This was done to recommend the best media that can be a useful tool in enhancing urban resilience in Zimbabwean urban settings. Results indicate that the media lacks a proper orientation on urban resilience in its reportage and needs capacitation.