Climate change adaptation in conflict-affected countries: A systematic assessment of evidence

A. Sitati, E. Joe, B. Pentz, C. Grayson, M.C. Jaime Sanchez, E. Gilmore, E. Galappaththi, A. Hudson, G. Nagle Alverio, K. J. Mach, M. van Aalst, N. Simpson, P. Nayna Schwerdtle, S. Templeman, Z. Zommers, I. Ajibade, L. S. Safaee Chalkasra, P. Umunay, I. Togola, A. KhouzamG. Scarpa, E. Coughlan de Perez

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People affected by conflict are particularly vulnerable to climate shocks and climate change, yet little is known about climate change adaptation in fragile contexts. While climate events are one of the many contributing drivers of conflict, feedback from conflict increases vulnerability, thereby creating conditions for a vicious cycle of conflict. In this study, we carry out a systematic review of peer-reviewed literature, taking from the Global Adaptation Mapping Initiative (GAMI) dataset to documenting climate change adaptation occurring in 15 conflict-affected countries and compare the findings with records of climate adaptation finance flows and climate-related disasters in each country. Academic literature is sparse for most conflict-affected countries, and available studies tend to have a narrow focus, particularly on agriculture-related adaptation in rural contexts and adaptation by low-income actors. In contrast, multilateral and bilateral funding for climate change adaptation addresses a greater diversity of adaptation needs, including water systems, humanitarian programming, and urban areas. Even among the conflict-affected countries selected, we find disparity, with several countries being the focus of substantial research and funding, and others seeing little to none. Results indicate that people in conflict-affected contexts are adapting to climate change, but there is a pressing need for diverse scholarship across various sectors that documents a broader range of adaptation types and their results.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalDiscover Sustainability
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sep 2021




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