In spatial planning, resilience is widely acknowledged as a new approach to incorporate uncertainty into governance strategies, particularly with respect to natural hazards such as flooding. Translating and applying the concept of resilience from its ecological and engineering roots to social sciences, however, remains a challenge. Contemporary understanding of the concept of 'resilience' differs across and within disciplines and the concept has evolved from its roots in ecology and engineering to become increasingly influential in the social and spatial sciences. The fact that resilience has evolved from engineering and ecological sciences is one of the few aspects of resilience which the different authors who use the concept in social and spatial sciences seem to agree upon. According to van der Vaart resilience is often imposed onto supposedly vulnerable communities 'from outside', usually without much reference to the community members' ideas and priorities or without making use of their lived experiences.