• construction practice;
  • design;
  • reconstruction;
  • resilience;
  • risk reduction;
  • stakeholders

The emerging emphasis on disaster risk reduction has broadened the range of experts whose knowledge must be garnered to resolve complex socio-technical challenges. This paper examines the role and position of the construction sector for addressing these concerns. Specifically, it examines the recursive nature of practices within the built environment, which can be seen as deeply ingraining fragmented approaches to the development process. These, in turn, render the industry a difficult arena within which to enact structural and cultural change. Based on a wide body of literature on resiliency a set of overarching principles are proffered to help inform efforts to overcome some of the barriers to creating a more resilient built environment. It is argued that these principles offer a point of departure for embedding resilience considerations at both project and institutional levels, although real change would demand challenging some of the conventions that currently underpin construction development.