“When we all look back at this moment in American history, I do believe the mayors, who are on the front lines, are going to be instrumental in helping us recover.” - President George W. Bush
In the third session, Josh Sharfstein, Vice Dean for Public Health Practice and Community Engagement at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, provided critical public health information. Jorrit de Jong, Faculty Director of the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative and Senior Lecturer in Public Policy and Management at Harvard Kennedy School, moderated the discussion on learning as fast as you can and creating a basis for hope with Dutch Leonard, the George F. Baker, Jr. Professor of Public Management at Harvard Kennedy School, and Eliot I. Snider and Family Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, and Juliette Kayyem, the Belfer Senior Lecturer in International Security at Harvard Kennedy School. President George W. Bush offered support for mayors and frontline health care workers in his opening remarks.
The work you do to foster and build your city’s resilience now—even as the crisis unfolds—is essential for establishing the rational basis for hope. Resilience is not an outcome, but rather a process your city is already engaging in every day. Instead of using the passive “be resilient,” for this unprecedented moment, we may want to invent an active form of the word—the verb “to resil.”
Whether you are trying to figure out a new mechanism to deliver the necessary services the city was providing prior to this crisis, or looking for a way to respond to an emergent need, there are a few key considerations on how to “resil.”