Official Side-Event COP21: The importance of social science research for understanding climate change induced migration
DATE AND TIME
Tuesday 1st December, 11:30-13:00
The Conference Centre, Paris – Le Bourget Site, Room 8 (open to accredited persons only)
Dr. Angela Oels, Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies (LUCSUS)
Co-organisers: Dr. Giovanni Bettini, Lancaster University and Prof. Jürgen Scheffran, Hamburg University
Programme of the side event
The EU Cost Action IS1101 ’Climate Change and Migration’ is coming to completion after four years of close collaboration between European and international partners from across the social sciences, humanities, law, and policy studies of all European member states. This side event is an opportune moment for the Action to disseminate its key findings and to identify areas for future research. Social science research has made a significant contribution to understanding climate change induced migration (‘climate migration’).
Our panel first looks at the root causes of climate migration. Dr. Andrew Baldwin from the Institute for Hazard, Risk and Resilience, Geography, Durham University introduces the Cost Action and looks at how inequality directly affects vulnerability to climate change impacts. Climate change impacts may affect migration movements and intensify already ongoing conflicts about resource usage and livelihoods. According to Prof. Jürgen Scheffran from CliSAP, Hamburg University, climate migration can lead to solidarity as much as to violent conflict. Scares of large scale climate wars are not justified.
Our panel then moves on to the question of agency of climate migrants. Dr. Angela Oels from the Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies and Dr. Giovanni Bettini from Lancaster Environment Centre (LEC), Lancaster University ask how those displaced by climate change have been named over the last twenty years and observe a marked shift from ‘victim’ to ‘adaptive migrant’. Dr. Francois Gemenne from Sciences Po / Liége University presents some good reasons why we might want to continue to use the term ‘climate refugee’. All three speakers highlight the need for democratic debate involving those at risk of being displaced in a decision between different climate futures.
The panel ends with a look at the policies to manage human mobility and climate change. Dr. Koko Warner from the Institute for Environment and Human Security, United Nations University (UNU-EHS) will assess scenarios of how human mobility may show up in COP21 discussions and point out opportunities for post-Paris climate policy and action to help vulnerable people. Nnimmo Bassey, will offer an external critical discussion of the research presented from the perspective of a non-governmental organization. He will highlight the need for climate justice. Dr. Andrew Baldwin will close the panel with some ideas on where future research needs to focus.
List of speakers
DR. ANDREW BALDWIN
Chair of COST Action IS1101 Climate change and migration, Institute for Hazard, Risk and Resilience, Geography, Durham University
The value of interdisciplinary social science research on climate change: Introduction to the COST Action on Climate Change and Migration.
Part I: Root causes of climate migration
PROF. JÜRGEN SCHEFFRAN
Geography/CliSAP, Hamburg University, Germany
Vulnerability, climate migration and violent conflict – what do we know?
Part II: Naming those displaced by environmental disaster: agency for climate migrants
DR. ANGELA OELS
Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies (LUCSUS)
The social construction of climate change induced migration: From climate refugee to climate warrior
DR. GIOVANNI BETTINI
Lancaster Environment Centre (LEC), Lancaster University
Unsettling futures – climate change, migration and the immobility of climate politics
DR. FRANCOIS GEMENNE
Political Science, Sciences Po / Liége University
Anthropocene and its victims: One good reason to speak of ‘climate refugees’
Part III: Post-2015 policies to manage human mobility and climate change
DR. KOKO WARNER
Institute for Environment and Human Security, United Nations University
Three things climate policy and action need to do post-Paris to help vulnerable, mobile people
Health of Mother Earth Foundation
Climate migration, human rights violations and the need for climate justice – a perspective from the global South
Part IV: The future research and policy agenda
DR. ANDREW BALDWIN
Institute for Hazard, Risk and Resilience, Geography, Durham University
Climate change, migration, and pluralism: directions for future social science research and policy
Visiting Professor Lund University
E-mail: angela.oels [at] svet.lu.se
Telephone number:+46 46 222 89 38
Dr. Angela Oels from Germany won the 24th Swedish Prize of Riksbankens Jubileumsfond in the ‘Swedish-German Programme for Scientific Co-operation‘ and as a result is a visiting professor at the Department of Political Science and at Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies until 31st March 2016.