Sonia Islam

I’m currently a PhD student at the School of Urban and Regional Planning. University of the Philippines Diliman. My research interest mainly revolves around Study of Disaster Risk Resiliency in Informal Settlements. Informal settlements have been running as a major challenge for sustainable urbanization policies. Community vulnerability and their sense of resilience need to be studied and strategized in the spatial planning process. COVID-19 has given us a unique opportunity to investigate contemporary approaches towards informal settlement upgrading. One of the possible methods to address informality is the upgrading of the settlements through regularization of tenure and provision of basic services. The Philippines is among the countries facing the worse side of COVID-19. This is inevitable due to the congestion within the Metropolitan cities. The pandemic has demonstrated how difficult it is to manage infections of this scale when there is overcrowding and following the lack of social distancing in crowded areas in the metro. The idea is that through settlement upgrading, the community networks would be enhanced and the development of resiliency measures within would leverage the anticipated self-sufficient neighbourhood concept.