The Practice and Politics of Urban Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Efforts: The Case of Cairo

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Research on climate change mitigation and adaptation is pressing in order to understand its implications and risks in different urban areas. It is especially critical for those who face high degrees of urban inequality in the context of an uneven state presence. This paper is an explorative and investigative study which uses Cairo as a case. The focus of the study is on mapping state and private sector efforts in mitigating climate change issues, specifically for vulnerable groups who have limited access to public services. The study adopted an investigative approach where a literature search and bibliometric mapping were used to identify the gap in knowledge in the field of architecture and urban climate change mitigation and adaptation, followed by a field survey which included conducting interviews and questionnaires with different stakeholders from the public and private sector to investigate the link between the efforts for climate change mitigation. The explorative part of the study concluded that there is a huge knowledge gap in the Middle East and in Egypt when it comes to research efforts related to climate change with a focus on the built environment. The results of the investigative part of this study revealed that—apart from already limited efforts on ground—there is no synchronization in efforts between the public and private sector. Climate change issues are still not a priority when poverty, economy, and health are still a prime concern and take precedence over climate change. There is uneven presence of public efforts for climate change adaptation and mitigation. The efforts that do exist in the public sphere are self-help unorganized work (efforts) conducted by the civil society.