Zurich Insurance Group in Switzerland has announced a $10 million grant to the Global Resilience Partnership (GRP) to help launch a grant-based competition focused on building resilience to global water challenges, including floods.
Through its Water Window competition, the partnership, whose key members include the Rockefeller Foundation, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), is inviting proposals for projects that fall into at least one of the partnership’s five focus areas: technology; innovative financing, including risk transfer mechanisms; measurement and diagnostics (e.g., tools that enable better understanding problems and risk caused by water); policy; and learning and innovation, including community practices that enhance awareness, education, engagement, female empowerment, and action orientation.
Awarded through the Z Zurich Foundation, the funding will support innovations aimed at enhancing flood resilience in line with a global flood resilience program launched by the firm in 2013. In addition to the competition, Zurich will play an active role in the partnership by contributing its resilience measurement expertise, engaging in finding optimal financing solutions, and supporting the development and implementation of public policy.
"Crisis is the new normal, and with so much of the world’s population living on or near water, flooding is often the source of crises," said Rockefeller Foundation president Judith Rodin. "The Global Resilience Partnership is leading the charge to build resilience across the Sahel, the Horn of Africa, and South and Southeast Asia, and Zurich is an excellent addition because of the expertise they can lend to spur innovation in building resilience to flooding. We look forward to welcoming other corporations to the Resilience Partnership, because when communities are resilient, so too are businesses. That’s part of the dividend of investing in resilience."