Five rules for climate adaptation in fragile and conflict-affected situations

By Elise Remling

Societies—particularly the poorest—are not ready to deal with the worsening impacts of climate change, and the deficit is growing, according to the latest report from the IPCC. We urgently need to step up investment in climate adaptation interventions, which aim to adjust social systems and structures to reduce their vulnerability to climate change.

However, in doing so we also need to recognize that interventions that make one community or area more resilient can make others even more vulnerable and insecure, and in some cases increase the risks of conflict. Researchers still often neglect such ‘maladaptive’ outcomes; practitioners even more so. How can organizations working on adaptation in fragile and conflict-affected situations make sure their interventions not only do no harm, but even contribute to peace?

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Why Does Climate Adaptation End Up Repeating, Rather Than Rethinking, Old Development Mistakes?

By Siri Eriksen, Marianne Mosberg, Benard Muok, Katharine Vincent, Lisa Schipper, Morgan Scoville-Simonds

Climate change requires rethinking development. Yet, in the (understandable) rush to support adaptation, this has taken place within the structures and process of existing development paradigms. As a consequence, similar to well-known critiques of the development architecture, many adaptation-interventions reproduce both the development problems and the skewed power relations that have contributed to vulnerability in the first place. Continue reading “Why Does Climate Adaptation End Up Repeating, Rather Than Rethinking, Old Development Mistakes?”

Behind the Scenes: The Strong Voice of Pacific Women in Climate Negotiations

By George Carter and Elise Howard

Women from Pacific Island countries have long been strategic and decisive leaders in climate negotiations, yet their stories are relatively unknown.  Our recent work explores women’s leadership at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in the making of the Paris Agreement 2015. We provide a snapshot of one year in  three decades of climate negotiations and explore, how women played strategic roles to elevate the Pacific’s position on a global stage.  Continue reading “Behind the Scenes: The Strong Voice of Pacific Women in Climate Negotiations”

Microfinance “business as usual” is not the climate action that we need

By Johan Bastiaensen

The urgency and profoundness of the climate crisis begs serious thought about the spending of climate related international donor and investment funds. Our research group at the Institute for Development Policy argues that these should be used to sponsor transformative pathways out of the upcoming climate crisis rather than focusing mainly on useful but ultimately insufficient band-aids to help some adapt to the worst of its consequences. Especially rural and agricultural microfinance institutions could play an important role in the transformation and restoration of the current socially distorted and ecologically disastrous agricultural model. Continue reading “Microfinance “business as usual” is not the climate action that we need”