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Assessing Institutional and Governance Needs Related to Environmental Change and Human Migration

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  • 8/9/2019 Assessing Institutional and Governance Needs Related to Environmental Change and Human Migration


    Summary: Often, the media and policy-

    makers approach the issue of climate

    change, migration and displacement by

    asking questions related to how many

    migrants will come. An equally important

    but less considered question is how na-

    tional institutions will adapt to accommo-

    date climate change and human mobility.

    This paper suggests that the capacity

    of states to adjust to these changes ef-

    fectively is contingent upon the particularcultural, social, economic and political

    contexts in which they function and the

    structural constraints of government

    machinery. Rather than proposing prt-a-

    porter solutions for nation-states, it is im-

    portant to help states better understand

    the institutional implications of climate

    change and human mobility and to aid

    them in designing custom policies. This

    paper illustrates these issues with refer-

    ence to climate change-induced migra-

    tion in Bangladesh, Mexico and Senegal.

    1744 R Street NWWashington, DC 20009 1 202 745 3950F 1 202 265 1662E [email protected]

    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

    Tis paper draws on patterns o envi-ronmentally induced migration whichhave emerged in recent empiricalwork and discusses how institutionsand policies inuence the orms ohuman mobility in the ace o envi-ronmental and climate change. It helpsassess institutional and governanceneeds related to environmental changeand human migration. In this papergovernance reers to the regulationo interdependent relations with many

    levels and actors, and also includes anelement o power and interest (Young,2002, 2004) in situations and poli-cies. Section 1 o the paper examinesvarious key concepts and denitionsrelated to climate change-inducedmigration. Section 2 addresses ques-tions about the level o prepared-ness within current institutional andgovernance rameworks to manageenvironmentally induced migration inthe uture. Where the paper identiesgaps in governance approaches, sec-tion 3 suggests ways to begin bridginggaps and dene new modes o gover-nance where needed. Tis paper ties inwith some o the messages presentedin Susan Martins background paperon adaptation mechanisms which

    may improve governance o climatechange-related migration.

    Concepts and denitions: links to

    governance gaps in environmental


    erms and concepts such as environ-mental or climate change migration,environmentally induced or orced mi-gration, ecological or environmentalreugees, and climate change reugees

    are used throughout the emergingliterature, with no general agreementon precise denition(s) (Dun andGemenne, 2008).1

    Te diculty o establishing clear de-nitions o concepts and terms relatedto climate change-induced migrationstems rom two issues. First, schol-ars have pointed out the challenge oisolating environmental actors romother migration drivers (Black, 2001;Castles, 2002; Boano et al., 2008). Asmigration is driven by a plethora oactors including climate change, it hasbeen dicult to establish the causalrelationships and consequences oclimate change-induced migration.Tis heightens the challenge o quanti-

    Assessing Institutional and Governance

    Needs Related to Environmental Change

    and Human Migration

    by Koko Warner

    June 2010

    1 This paper uses the working denition of environmentally induced migrants proposed by the IOM: Environmentally

    induced migrants are persons or groups of persons who, for compelling reasons of sudden or progressive changes

    in the environment that adversely affect their lives or living conditions, are obliged to leave their habitual homes, or

    choose to do so, either temporarily or permanently, and who move either within their country or abroad (IOM, 2007:


  • 8/9/2019 Assessing Institutional and Governance Needs Related to Environmental Change and Human Migration


    ying such migration and explains the wide range in expert

    estimates o climate change-induced migrant populations.

    It was also dicult to dene the range o climate change-induced migration because o the institutional and gover-nance implications o doing so: Denitions o the problem(i.e., as a migration, humanitarian, development, security,or environmental issue) allow an assignment o authority toaddress environmentally induced migration.

    How institutions and policies affect environmentally

    induced migration outcomes

    Emerging empirical research indicates that environmentalchanges including climate change currently play a role inmigration (Jger at et al., 2009; Warner et al., 2008, 2009).Figure 1 (see page 17) provides a typology o dierent ormso environmentally induced migration or rapid- and slow-onset environmental stressors (Renaud et al., 2010). Dis-tinguishing between rapid- and slow-onset events providesa useul point o departure or understanding the potentialgovernance needs o migrants, as well as possible gaps incurrent institutions and policies designed to address humanmobility. Tis section will explore how institutions andpolicy aect environmentally induced migration, pointing

    out the role o time, environmental stressors, the quality opolicy interventions, and gaps in policy and governance.

    Governance gaps: rapid-onset environmental change

    and migration

    One subset o environmentally induced migration is relatedto rapid-onset environmental changes ofen in the orm onatural disasters. Tis section discusses the current gover-nance gaps related to managing human mobility in the aceo rapid-onset environmental change, and highlights theimportance o eective pre- and post-disaster management.able 1 (see page 15) provides an overview o these gaps.

    Rapid-onset climate events

    Te occurrence o migration related to rapid-onset eventsis perhaps the easiest to identiy because the impacts o theenvironmental event are relatively observable, and in somecases reported by the media. Such events include severeweather such as ooding, windstorms, storm surges andlandslides (ofen related to heavy rains), as well as geological

    occurrences like earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. When

    rapid-onset natural disasters occur, people ofen must eerom the aected area to avoid physical harm or loss olie. In some cases homes are destroyed, making tempo-rary resettlement in shelters a necessary risk managementapproach. During and afer rapid-onset events, livelihoodsare ofen lost or interrupted through destruction o crops,livestock or productive assets. Tese kinds o impacts canmotivate people to move. Te way that disasters o this typeare managed plays a role in peoples mobility decisions.

    Te time period o interest in governing human mobil-ity and rapid-onset environmental hazards is typically the

    rst 72 hours ollowing an event or humanitarian relieeorts. Te ocus o these eorts is ofen around rescue,establishing temporary shelters, and medical help. In thedays ollowing a disaster, humanitarian eorts may shif to-wards providing clean ood and water, stabilization o localpopulations and assessment o the situation. Ofen mediais present in these rst ew days ollowing an event, andplay a role in mobilizing resources to pay or humanitarianassistance. In cases where people are evacuated or displaceddue to a disaster, policy gaps ofen arise around where thesepeople should go in the weeks, months and sometimesyears ollowing a disaster. wo examples o evacuation and

    subsequent (permanent) displacement include HurricaneKatrina (2005) and the eruption o the Montserrat volcanoin the Caribbean.

    Role of policy interventions and governance gaps

    (post-disaster recovery, legal status of displaced people)

    For rapid-onset events, humanitarian organizations lead theeorts to assist people aected by and possibly displacedby environmental hazards, in coordination with nationalgovernments and donors. Te ecacy o governance playsa critical role in whether migrants will return, or whetherthey will stay away indenitely. Migrants will likely needsupport in integration, establishing livelihoods in new areasand protection rom any number o discriminatory prac-tices. Sof law such as the Guiding Principles on InternallyDisplaced People (IDP) may protect these people to someextent, but the lack o recognition o environmental stress-ors as a legitimate cause o migration may limit eectiveassistance or protection. Following the 2002 earthquakes inEl Salvador and the 2005 Hurricane Katrina, governmentslike the United States have granted temporary visas or mi-


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    grants so that they could work and provide remittances and

    assistance to aected amily members. It is unclear whethersuch practices will become an international norm; hence, apartial gap exists.

    In the immediate afermath o the event, people are able toreturn to their origins depending on the degree to whichrecovery o social, economic and physical characteristics othe aected area is rapid and eective, or slow and ine-ective. As noted above, humanitarian organizations areequipped to respond to disasters, but not necessarily to ad-equately manage larger-scale or longer-term displacement.Some sof-law provisions are in place internationally regard-

    ing the protection o IDPs (Kalin, 2000), but ew systematicapproaches are in place and this is ofen an overlookedpolicy area (Kolmannskogg, 2008; Oliver-Smith, 2009).

    Tis partial gap implies that the capacity o humanitar-ian organizations could be exceeded by climate change, aswell as the increasing exposure o people and their assetsto natural hazards. Environmental change today blurs themandates o humanitarian organizations: raditionallythese organizations have provided relie and disaster as-sistance. Increasingly today, however, they are aced withmore requent and intense disasters, as well as longer-term

    displacement issues. Tere are some provisions, such asin sof law, or the protection o IDPs, but these are ofenspecically related to conict situations where developmentagencies and organizations are less able to intervene. Hu-manitarian organizations could ace a capacity challenge ithe number o rapid-onset events and the number o peopleaected by them grows signicantly. Kirsch-Wood et al.noted In the last 20 years the recorded number o disasterscaused by oods has increased by 300 percent rom about50 to more than 200 events. Floods and storms now trig-ger the bulk o sudden-onset international humanitarianresponses. O the 26 UN Flash Appeals issued since Janu-ary 2006, 18 appeals have been in response to oods andcyclones (2008: 40).

    In the recovery phase, there are two broad alternatives orpeople who have voluntarily moved or have been displacedby environmental hazards. However, there are governanceand policy gaps related to both o these alternatives.

    First, i disaster response is rapid and eective, then it isexpected that aected areas will recover both economi-

    cally (important or livelihoods) and physically (rebuilding

    inrastructure, reestablishing pre-disaster systems) within arelevant timerame. In this case o eective recovery (whichcan include both good governance, as well as the avail-ability o nance), people will have a range o choices abouttheir mobility. Some temporarily displaced people maychoose to return to their origins and reestablish themselves(IOM, 2007). However, i disaster risk recovery and associ-ated policy interventions are ineective in reestablishingcritical inrastructure and services, as well as reestablishinga minimum level o social order and livelihood possibili-ties, aected people may not be able to return within a shortperiod o time. Te timing o governance interventions

    plays a key role even i people could technically returnto hazard aected areas, they may not choose to return irehabilitation does not take place soon enough to be in syncwith lie cycle or other developments (such as employment,or services like schooling or children). I disaster-displacedpeople do choose to not return to impacted areas, theybecome climate change migrants, or which no currentgovernance ramework is established. Tere is currently nolegal category or status or climate change migrants, andlittle systematic orm o support or such people.

    Second, i disaster response is slow and ineective, it is

    expected that aected areas will not recover economically(important or livelihoods), socially and/or physically (re-building inrastructure, reestablishing pre-disaster systems)within a relevant timerame. In this case, recovery is ine-ective. Reasons or ineective rehabilitation can includepoor governance, as well as the lack o availability onance or other resources or recovery. Tis limits the rangeo mobility-related choices or aected people. I peoplecannot return to the impacted area, they may become anenvironmentallyforced migrant or which no currentgovernance ramework is established. In this case, there is agovernance gap or people who were displaced and cannotreturn to disaster-aected areas. Afer disaster assistancehas been exhausted, no systematic approach appears to bein place in most countries to address the needs o climatechange migrants.

    In summary, many regions o the world are currently par-tially equipped to manage this subset o environmentallyinduced migration related to rapid-onset environmentalhazards largely because there are policies and mecha-nisms in place or prevention/risk reduction, humanitarian


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    assistance and post-disaster rehabilitation. However, these

    mechanisms are mostly oriented towards the immediateafermath o a disaster, and practice indicates importantgaps which can make it dicult or people who have beendisplaced by a disaster to return to their homes and resumetheir normal lives.

    Governance gaps: slow-onset events and migration

    For slow-onset events, the intervening actors that preventor enable people to return (or avoid migration and dis-placement in the rst place) become more complex. Teurgency or ight is temporally less pressing because the

    rate o environmental change is slower. People may not havea choice to return to their ormer place o residence due tothe physical loss o their land, or example, due to coastalerosion or sea-level rise. However, in cases where the physi-cal land is still available, people may have the opportunityto return to their original place o living, particularly i theycan implement alternative livelihoods. Accelerated or slowerenvironmental change can aect the livelihoods o people toa degree that some or all household members migrate. Terelative importance o environmental actors in livelihoodshelps determine how important the environment is whenmigration decisions are made. In some cases, alternative

    livelihoods or other coping capacities are possible in theaected area. Yet people may still choose to leave the area,anticipating worsening conditions. I alternative livelihoodsare not possible in the relevant timerame, or i the im-pacted area ceases to ulll its unction (such as succumbingto desertication or sinking below the sea level) then orcedmigration could occur. Policy interventions will largelyshape the outcome.

    Slow-onset climate events and migration

    able 2 (see page 16) examines some o the governanceissues related to environmentally induced migration andslow-onset events.

    Slow-onset environmental changes can negatively aectlivelihood systems and contribute to migration pressuresin the long term; the underlying environmental actors,however, may not be accounted or in migration patternsbecause they are slow and harder to observe. Te occur-rence o migration related to slow-onset events is morechallenging to identiy because the impacts o the environ-

    mental event are incremental, and seldom reported by the

    media until they become acute crises. Such events includeclimate change impacts like regional changes in rainallvariability and seasons; sea level rise or the gradual degrada-tion o ecosystems like desertication and land degradationand loss o biodiversity. When slow-onset environmentaldegradation occurs, livelihoods like arming, herding andshing deteriorate. Yields all, and the ability to diversiy(such as supplementing arm yields with hunting or shing)may decline. Communities and amilies may increasinglysee migration (to urban areas or across borders) as oer-ing more attractive possibilities to worsening lie qualityin areas aected by slow-onset environmental change. Te

    way that the degradation is managed plays a role in peoplesmobility decisions.

    Role of policy interventions and governance gaps

    (livelihoods, resettlement and legal issues)

    First, it is possible that existing institutions can make e-ective interventions to protect livelihoods, and in waysthat are relevant to human mobility. Policies can, in theory,acilitate human mobility where appropriate, and makestaying possible where appropriate. Deciding what is ap-propriate and under what circumstances is one o the key

    challenges policymakers ace related to human mobility andslow-onset environmental change. Tis is an area wheremany governance and policy gaps exist consisting o a mixo gaps in development governance, overlaid by environ-mental and climate change.

    Tere is a potential or interventions to reduce vulnerability,enhance resilience, develop livelihood alternatives, improverisk management alternatives and so orth. Yet some institu-tions with prociency in such areas like livelihood cre-ation and protection are not a ull part o the governanceregime or human mobility. I measures are eective topreserve livelihoods (as well as reduce vulnerability), thenaected people maintain their reedom o choice o whetherto migrate away rom environmentally degrading areas. Ithis is the case, one can identiy a governance gap: Policycommunities needed to address environmentally motivatedmigration related to slow-onset environmental change o-ten lack platorms or communication. Tis can prevent theormation o eective governance o human mobility andenvironmentally driven livelihood degradation. Livelihoodsare governed largely within the realm o development or


    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

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    sectoral ministries such as agriculture, while environmental

    degradation is largely within the realm o environmentalprotection. Similarly (ground) water and soil quality, coastalerosion, and storm surge or sea level rise issues may bemanaged in separate, silo-like policy arenas. o address thisgap, there is a need to involve aected people in the deni-tion o intervention and adaptation alternatives rangingrom helping people remain in their traditional homes,acilitating movement where appropriate (possibly in largergroups o people) and involving aected people in resettle-ment decisions and design.

    Second, an alternative livelihood was not possible in the

    relevant time period, or i the impacted area no longer ex-ists then people may have no choice about whether they canremain at home. In such cases, people or groups o peoplemay be either displaced or orced to migrate i governanceapproaches do not eectively protect livelihoods in the aceo slow-onset environmental change. For such environ-mentally orced migrants, a governance gap exists. Tereare ew examples worldwide o legal provisions or internalresettlement due to environmental degradation (when inplace, such provisions are more ofen related to rapid-onsetenvironmental hazards). Dialogue about resettlement goodpractice or experiences is limited. Tese are challenges that

    are already observed in some coastal areas. In the case oShishmare, Alaska, or example, local, state, and ederal au-thorities are struggling to address accelerating coastal ero-sion that is orcing several communities to relocate (Bronen,2008). A 2006 study identied several critical governancegaps that require attention i relocation is to occur, includ-ing that no government agency has the authority to relocatecommunities, no unding is designated or relocation andno criteria are dened or identiying relocation sites (USArmy Corps o Engineers, 2006). Governance in developingcountries may be even more challenged with the prospecto resettling people in the ace o environmental change.Te case o needing assistance or sovereign resettlement, oreven policy dialogue about resettlement between countriesor acilitated by relevant institutions is in nascent stages(Boncour and Burson, 2009). Additionally, the currentgovernance ramework does not systematically provide anoutlet or the participation o aected peoples.

    In summary, ew regions o the world currently appearequipped to manage human mobility related to slow-onset

    environmental degradation some o which may be caused

    by climate change. Te governance gaps related to thissubset o environmentally induced migration come in partbecause o policy silos, because o the gradual nature ochange itsel and because o the challenges o sustainingtraditional livelihoods or creating alternative livelihoods.Further, the rising possibility that some areas o the worldcould become unable to support livelihoods at all eitherbecause o extreme degradation or because they no longerexist in habitable orms (in the case o permarost melt, sealevel rise, or desertication) presents a major challenge tothe governance o human mobility. Some countries, such asNew Zealand, extend the opportunity or work-related visas

    to endangered low-lying island countries like uvalu, butthese programs remain limited in numbers. Te New Zea-land visa program reaches less than 100 people per year, aquota which ofen goes unlled because o concerns amongsending communities o depopulating the country o uvalu(Jger et al., 2009).

    Those who remain behind

    Te ocus o much political and academic debate is centeredon migrants or reugees, rather than the equally importantquestion o people who remain behind (Zetter, 2008). Some

    people who remain behind may be able to do so because oresilient capacity, an ability to adapt to changing environ-mental conditions. Tese people may be vulnerable, butthey are not always helpless. People who do not migrateaway rom environmental change can be active agents withresilient characteristics. Literature on social capital andnetworks suggests that there are public and private elementso adaptive action, based on trust, reputation and recipro-cal action o those individuals involved. In many cases,adaptation to environmental and climate change will be inthe orm o collective action at the community level (Adger,2003). Adaptive activities can enhance resilience o commu-nities against rapid- and slow-onset environmental change,particularly i networks o people engage and share theirlearning experiences.

    Tere may also be circumstances where people are orcedto remain behind or who are unable to migrate becauseo poverty or other kinds o vulnerability, such as lack oeducation or vocational skills, lack o social networks andso orth. Te current governance regime does not account


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    or those who remain behind both those with resilience

    capacity and those who have no opportunity to move away.Tis also constitutes a gap in the governance o human mo-bility. Future studies could compare and contrast motiva-tion or staying and leaving in order to oer insights aboutthe dierences that there might be between those who leaveand those who stay behind.

    Potential policy approaches: challenges, new modes of


    Te paper so ar has outlined gaps and partial gaps or man-aging environmentally motivated and orced migration and

    displacement. Tis section examines some o the challengesin addressing the gaps identied in this paper: institutionaland policy silos, identiying where to administer help andassigning authority to address the problems. Ten the sec-tion examines potential policy approaches and new modeso governance or environmentally related human mobility.

    Challenges: short-term, emergency-focused institutions

    and policies

    Institutional and policy silosSome acets o the current governance system may activelyencourage approaches that may be too narrow to managecomplex issues like environmentally induced migration. Forexample, the management o human mobility today allslargely within the mandates o international humanitar-ian organizations and national governments. Humanitar-ian organizations ocus traditionally on crisis and disastermanagement, ofen with a short-term perspective and notwith the goal (or capacity) to maintain long-term guidance,support and protection. Silos o institutional managementwill be hard pressed to eectively address the needs omigrants and their amilies i the wider context o resilienceand adaptation is not considered.

    Where to administer help?

    Dynamics o migration and coupled socio-ecological sys-tems today make it less clear where and how to administerhelp: at the source o environmental degradation and wherepeople stay behind, or migrants in transit, or in receiving

    communities. Tis has the potential to create dierenti-

    ated groups with dierent capacities and needs. While largegroups o people may migrate in the uture, even amongsuch a group there may be little homogeneity, except or theuniying environmental stressor that set them on the move.Environmental change will aect what individuals or house-holds in a community become mobile. Characteristics likegender, age and socioeconomic status will all aect unold-ing patterns o environmentally induced migration. In theace o slow-onset environmental change those who are ableto move those with money, social networks, and alterna-tive livelihoods may migrate independently. Te vulner-able poor, those with no capacity to move, the very young

    and the elderly may be lef behind initially, and orced toresettle later. Gender and demographic structure also playa role in environmentally induced migration patterns.Property rights, resource distribution and amily roles aectmen and womens migration patterns, particularly when theenvironment becomes a strong push actor. Young healthymales orced to abandon their arming lands will have di-erent governance demands than a household o young chil-dren and aging parents, headed by a single mother in ightrom advancing deserts or a hurricane. One group mayneed livelihood assistance, another may need resettlementassistance, another may need humanitarian assistance, and

    all may need some kind o dierentiated legal protection.


    Several questions related to authority arise or the uture:what institutions will have authority to classiy environ-mentally induced migrants, and protect the interests o re-ceiving or sending countries? Te international communitycan play a role in shaping norms and standards related toenvironmentally induced migration (or example, the roleit has played in creating principles or IDPs). Yet nationalstates will largely remain the implementing actors and willretain authority or classiying and administering assistanceto environmentally induced migrants, motivated or orced.A number o operational issues arise: How can the volun-tary or orced nature o environmentally induced migrationbe determined and by whom? Would those who migratevoluntarily be able to qualiy or government assistance,even i their choice to move was not part o a governmentpolicy or program? In Mozambique, Vietnam and Egypt,


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    the government relocated people into planned settlement

    areas, but more needs to be known about how decisionswere made and how programs were sustained over time.

    Are new modes of governance needed?

    Current institutional rameworks or managing migrationand environmental change divide institutional managementand responsibility along lines o environmental, migrationand humanitarian needs (Zetter, 2008). Likewise or gov-ernments, many o the environmental stressors they acewithin their territories result rom transboundary issues in-cluding river delta management, desertication and climate

    change. Responses and management ofen occurs within acountrys borders and within specic ministerial lines (i.e.,environment ministry, agricultural ministry, disaster man-agement, immigration services, etc.) (Vlassopoulos, 2008).Tis structure is partly suitable to address some orms oenvironmentally induced migration. For example, ollowingrapid-onset disasters, governments and humanitarian orga-nizations mobilize to provide assistance to environmentalemergency migrants on a largely short-term basis.

    For longer-term displacement, however, assistance o di-erent orms and o a more durable nature may be required.

    Institutional responsibility and governance become moreblurred or slow-onset events such as drought. For example,in Niger, the Nile Delta, and the Mekong Delta, migrationhas occurred when slow-onset environmental change al-tered the ability o people to maintain their livelihoods anda certain quality o lie. In these cases, the vulnerability oboth those who departed and those who remained behindincreased (A, 2009a, 2009b; Dun, 2009). Gradual changesin ecological systems and related social shifs will requirethat governance address the vulnerability o those who mi-grate or are displaced as well as those who remain behind.Ideally, this governance would be comprehensive and coor-dinated to prevent protection gaps (Kolmannskog, 2008).

    Mapping exercise of available frameworks and good


    o develop various rameworks and provide a set o op-tions to countries dealing with environmental migration, amapping exercise o available rameworks and good practicesolutions could be undertaken. Such a mapping exercise

    could start at a national or sub-national level and identiy

    good practice processes like relocation or resettlement. Temapping could start by gathering answers to the ollowingquestions in countries aected by environmental migration:

    What are current institutions, laws and governancepractices in respect to environmentally induced mi-gration?

    Are there gaps?

    What dynamics do we see with migration?

    What does climate change mean or institutional set-up and robustness?

    Are there available scenarios based on climate sci-ence?

    Where are the challenges, barriers and opportunitieso environmentally induced migration?

    Tis rst attempt at data gathering at the national levelcould be expanded with case studies o legal institutionsin identied hot spot areas. Site visits could oster a policy

    dialogue about potential uture climate change impacts. Tepolicy dialogue could extend to aected communities inorder to involve the communities in the process o respond-ing to climate change-induced migration. Additionally, anassessment or institutions under uture climate changescenarios could identiy gaps and help to avoid inecientpractices. Te gathered inormation could inuence adialogue at a national and regional level in order to provideinstitutions with the required policy alternatives and legalgovernance approaches. Te outcomes o the above men-tioned assessment would be the ollowing:

    Impact scenarios or institutions, legal rameworksand governance rameworks

    Specic ocus o resettlement areas

    Indicators to signal transitions in mobility

    Although many governance mechanisms must be orged atthe national level (both because this is the rontline and be-


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    cause much o the impact o migration will be experienced

    within national borders), the capacity o national agents asnoted elsewhere in the literature, particularly in the LDCs,is sometimes severely limited. Both nancial and techni-cal support rom international governance mechanismsand oreign agencies may be necessary. Te assessment oinstitutional and governance needs could be expanded toencompass the multiple tiers o governance involved and itwould be useul to note the complex process o interactionbetween these tiers.

    Opportunities to enhance resilience of both migrants

    and those who remain behind

    Despite challenges, opportunities exist or institutions andpolicies to play a mediating role in the orm that environ-mentally induced migration takes. Eective policy interven-tions may increase the quality and quantity o alternativesavailable to people aced with environmental pressures,thereore preventing human mobility rom becoming ahumanitarian crisis. States will implement policies andinstitutions that will largely make a dierence in whetherenvironmental actors including climate change motivate(other options available, including return) or orce (ew iany options available) migration and displacement. Tese

    governance interventions will thereore play a leading rolein determining the degree to which migration is a orm oadaptation, or an indicator o a ailure to adapt.

    Guiding principles and dialogue

    Recognizing that states will be the main implementing ac-tors, sets o guiding principles can be established to assistcountries in the implementation o policies that governenvironmentally induced migration. A more substantialevidence base o cases and lessons learned rom practice isneeded to support such a set o principles. Policy dialogue,especially at the national level, is needed to understand howclimate change impacts aect livelihood potential. Mecha-nisms and policy processes or managing environmentalchange largely ignore human mobility issues. Existingmechanisms or managing human mobility cover economicmigrants and humanitarian crises, rather than environmen-tal change. Humanitarian organizations will need greatercapacity to respond to disaster-related displacement and

    migration. Currently, organizations involved in develop-

    ment, disaster and humanitarian assistance only partiallyparticipate in dialogues on environmental change andmigration. It would be useul to provide a dialogue plat-orm or exchange about the experiences in countries whichare already using resettlement programs as a response toenvironmental stressors. Migration is a livelihood issue notonly reecting rom where people are emigrating, but alsoto where they are immigrating. Little is known about thelonger-term capacity o receiving countries to accommodatelarger numbers o (environmentally orced or motivated)migrants (Warner and Laczko, 2008).

    Foster adaptive capacity through migrant networks

    Tere is potential to oster adaptive capacity and resiliencein migrant networks. Migrants ofen remain linked tocommunities that remain behind, whether as individualmigrants or as larger groups, such as environmentally dis-placed people. Tese links may be material (remittances),cultural/social or political, and shape the resilience andadaptation capacity o both those who leave and those whostay (Adger et al., 2001). Networks provide security ormigrant passage and livelihood security. Eective networksmutate to adjust to changes in external circumstances and

    in response to internal changes among network members.Research indicates that networks are perceived by migrantsas having costs (obligations to help others in the network,sanctions against detrimental behavior) and benets (gain-ing inormation, access to livelihoods or entitlements).When internal and external cost-benet surrounding anetwork changes, such as when environmental conditionschange, a member can become more inclined to activelyparticipate, stay in or rejoin a network.

    Flexible policies and institutions

    An opportunity and challenge or governance systems is tocreate policies and actions that exibly manage migrationand environmental change, which in themselves are highlydynamic and nonlinear processes. Tis may mean a combi-nation o approaches that have been shown to be eective inthe past, including: improving education and training thatacilitate access to alternative livelihoods in communitiesaected by environmental change; technical measures that


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    complement better resource and land management; enhanc-

    ing access to other types o risk management tools, such asrisk sharing and risk transer tools like (micro)insurance.

    Participation in policy formation

    Migrants ace high costs in creating and preserving newnetwork ties, which requires the development o mutualtrust and obligations, and social ties. New links are time-and resource-intensive, and these links are also geographi-cally ragile. Resettlement or other mobility can interruptnetworks and represent a loss o investment and risk diver-sication. When resources like ecosystem services become

    scarce, migrant networks commonly resize themselves.Instead o cleanly breaking rom a kin-based network, net-work boundaries are ofen redrawn to manage conict andredene mutual obligations. Because o the complex anddynamic nature o social networks among migrants, oneconclusion or governance is that people should be activelyinvolved in planning activities such as resettlement, and asmuch as possible be given the reedom to move and react tomicro-level incentive structures. Heavily controlled migra-tion management systems may be ill-equipped to addressthe nuances o migrant needs in the ace o environmentalchange and the uid boundaries o migrant networks and

    other resilience or adaptation capacities. Involvement o a-ected populations will help policy makers identiy relevantrisks and a range o solutions (including but not limited tomigration). Such participation can put migration in posi-tive terms o a range o options to manage environmentaland climate change. Policy approaches may also nd waysto acilitate the involvement o diaspora communities andmigrant networks where possible.


    Te paper has examined how institutions and policies aectenvironmentally induced migration, and gaps in currentgovernance rameworks or rapid- and slow-onset environ-mental change. Te analysis above identied the major gapsin governance or environmental change and human mobil-ity. Existing strategies o humanitarian relie will help somepeople eeing rom rapid-onset disasters. However, theanalysis suggests that new governance modes are needed tobridge gaps in protection and assistance or climate changemigrants who cannot return afer disasters, and people

    made mobile because o longer-term environmental change.

    New governance approaches will need to consider the roleo migration in adaptation: not only will support be neededor migrants, but also or those who remain behind. Tesenew modes o governance must take into account dynamicsocial and migrant networks, and enhance resilience in ex-ible rather than control-based ways.


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    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

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    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

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    Dr. Koko Warner is an Academic Ofcer and Head of the Environmental Migration,

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    seeks ways to reduce risks and vulnerabilities resulting from complex environmental

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    ber 2006.


    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

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    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

    Table 1a: Governance gaps, environmentally induced migration and rapid-onset events2

    2 An earlier version of this table appeared in Warner, K. 2010. Global Environmental Change and Migration: Governance Challenges. Global Environmental Change, Special Issue

    focusing on Resilience and Governance. Published online January 6, 2010. doi: 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2009.12.001

    Rapid-onset Hazards (e.g. Floods, Hurricanes/Cyclones): Gaps related to humanitarian assistance, rehabilitation, legal status/

    protection of affected migrants

    Time period Role of


    Intervention Governance gap? Explanation Comment


    aftermath of

    a rapid-onset

    event (often the

    rst 72 hours or

    week following an



    destroyed, lost &/

    or unsafe. People

    ee to save their


    In immediate

    aftermath, quality

    and quantity of




    2 alternatives in

    recovery phase:

    Partial gap Humanitarian


    equipped to

    respond to

    disasters, but

    not necessarily

    to adequately

    manage larger

    scale or longer-

    term displacement

    (some soft law

    provisions, such as

    for IDPs)


    frequency &

    intensity of such

    events stretches

    capacity of



    donor fatigue.

    IF Rapid &

    effective social,

    economic &

    physical recovery

    of impactedareas (good


    Migrant has a

    choice whether to

    return to impacted


    Gap If migrant does not

    return to impacted

    area, becomes


    motivated migrantfor which no

    current governance

    framework is


    No legal category

    or status for


    motivated migrant

    IF Slow &

    ineffective social,

    economic &

    physical recovery

    of impacted

    areas (poor


    Migrant may not

    be able to return to

    impacted area.

    Gap If migrant does not

    return to impacted

    area, becomes


    forced migrant

    for which no

    current governance

    framework is


    IDP framework

    potential could

    cover the needs

    of internally

    displaced forced

    migrants, but


    factors are

    not currently

    recognized (someexceptions)


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    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

    Table 1b: Rapid-onset hazards (e.g., oods, hurricances/cyclones): Gaps related to humanitarian assistance, reha-

    bilitation, legal status/protection of affected migrants

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    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

    Table 2: Governance gaps, climate change-induced migration, and slow-onset events3

    3 An earlier version of this table appeared in Warner, K. 2010. Global Environmental Change and Migration: Governance Challenges. Global Environmental Change, Special Issue

    focusing on Resilience and Governance- Published online 6 January 2010. doi: 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2009.12.001

    Slow-onset Hazards: Gaps related to livelihood protection, resettlement and legal issues (including sovereignty for sinking islands)

    Time period Role of environment Intervention Governance gap? Explanation Comment



    of ecosystems

    like pollution

    events, rapid

    soil erosion.



    contributing to



    change contributes to

    worsening livelihood


    Are effective

    interventions undertaken

    to protect livelihoods, &

    in ways that are relevant

    to human mobility (i.e.

    facilitating mobility

    where appropriate, or

    facilitating staying

    where appropriate).

    2 alternatives,

    depending on efcacy

    of livelihood protection

    and governance


    Gap Mix of gaps in



    overlaid by

    environmental and

    climate change.


    governance ofhuman mobility

    does not account

    for environmental



    to livelihood


    Livelihoods are

    governed largely

    within the realm

    of development,

    & environmental

    degradation is

    largely withinthe realm of



    Potential for

    interventions to

    reduce vulnerability,

    enhance resilience,

    develop livelihood

    alternatives, improve

    risk management


    Need to involve affected

    people in the denition

    of intervention &

    adaptation alternatives

    ranging from helping

    people remain in their

    traditional homes,

    facilitating movement

    where appropriate

    (possibly in larger

    groups of people),

    & involving affected

    people in resettlement

    decisions & design.



    of ecosystems

    like land


    loss of

    biodiversity,sea level rise.



    contributing to


    If an alternative

    livelihood is possible

    in affected area, then

    people have a choice of

    whether to migrate or



    If an alternative

    livelihood was not

    possible in the relevant

    time period, or if the

    impacted area no longer

    exists then people may

    have no choice & may

    be either displaced or

    forced to migrate

    Gap Lack of legal provisions

    for resettlement &

    sovereign resettlement.

    Little policy dialogue

    about resettlement

    between countries or

    facilitated by relevant


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    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

    Figure 1: Environmental processes and migration, rapid- and slow-onset events (Renaud et al., 2010)

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    Study team members

    Susan Martin, Institute or the Study o International Migration, Schoolo Foreign Service, Georgetown University, Washington, DC (Co-Chair)

    Koko Warner, Institute or Environment and Human Security, UnitedNations University, Bonn, Germany (Co-Chair)

    Jared Banks and Suzanne Sheldon, Bureau or Population, Reugees andMigration, U.S. Department o State, Washington, DC

    Regina Bauerochse Barbosa, Economy and Employment Department,Sector Project Migration and Development, German echnicalCooperation (GZ), Eschborn, Germany

    Alexander Carius, Moira Feil, and Dennis nzler, Adelphi Research,Berlin, Germany

    Joel Charny, Reugees International, Washington, DC

    Dimitria Clayton, Ministry or Intergenerational Aairs, Family, Womenand Integration, State o North Rhine-Westphalia, Dsseldor, Germany

    Sarah Collinson, Overseas Development Institute, London, UnitedKingdom

    Peter Croll, Ruth Vollmer, Andrea Warnecke, Bonn International Centeror Conversion, Bonn, Germany

    Frank Laczko, International Organization or Migration, Geneva,Switzerland

    Agustin Escobar Latapi, Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superioresen Antropologa Social (CIESAS), Guadalajara, Mexico

    Michelle Leighton, Center or Law and Global Justice, University o SanFrancisco, San Francisco, Caliornia and Munich Re Foundation-UNUChair in Social Vulnerability

    Philip Martin, University o Caliornia, Migration Dialogue, Davis,Caliornia

    Heather McGray, World Resources Institute, Washington, DC

    Lorenz Petersen, Climate Change askorce, German echnicalCooperation (GZ), Eschborn, Germany

    Aly andian, Groupe dEtudes et de Recherches sur les Migrations(GERMS), Gaston Berger University, Senegal

    Agnieszka Weinar, Directorate-General Justice, Freedom and Security,European Commission, Brussels, Belgium

    Astrid Ziebarth, German Marshall Fund o the United States, Berlin,Germany.

    List of papers

    Developing Adequate Humanitarian Responsesby Sarah Collinson

    Migration, the Environment and Climate Change: Assessing the Evidenceby Frank Laczko

    Climate Change and Migration: Key Issues or Legal Protection oMigrants and Displaced Personsby Michelle Leighton

    Climate Change, Agricultural Development, and Migrationby Philip Martin

    Climate Change and International Migrationby Susan F. Martin

    Climate Change, Migration and Adaptationby Susan F. Martin

    Climate Change, Migration and Conict: Receiving Communities underPressure?by Andrea Warnecke, Dennis nzler and Ruth Vollmer

    Assessing Institutional and Governance Needs Related to EnvironmentalChange and Human Migrationby Koko Warner


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    Study Team on Climate-Induced Migration

    Transatlantic Study TeamsTe GMF Immigration and Integration Programs ransatlantic Study eams link the transatlantic debate on inter-national migration ows with its consequences or sending and receiving regions. Trough compiling existing data,policy analysis, and dialogue with policymakers, selected study teams gather acts, convene leading opinion leaderson both sides o the Atlantic, promote open dialogue, and help to advance the policy debate. Study teams are chosenby a competitive selection process, based on the overall quality o their proposal, its policy relevance, institutionalstrength, sustainability, and potential or synergies. Te ransatlantic Study eam 2009/2010 is investigating the impacto climate change on migration patterns. Environmental deterioration, including natural disasters, rising sea level,and drought problems in agricultural production, could cause millions o people to leave their homes in the comingdecades. Led by Dr. Susan F. Martin, Georgetown University, and Dr. Koko Warner, UN University, the team consists oscholars, policymakers and practitioners rom the migration and environmental communities.

    Te German Marshall Fund o the United States (GMF) is a non-partisan American public policy and grantmakinginstitution dedicated to promoting better understanding and cooperation between North America and Europe ontransatlantic and global issues. GMF does this by supporting individuals and institutions working in the transatlan-tic sphere, by convening leaders and members o the policy and business communities, by contributing research andanalysis on transatlantic topics, and by providing exchange opportunities to oster renewed commitment to the trans-atlantic relationship. In addition, GMF supports a number o initiatives to strengthen democracies. Founded in 1972through a gif rom Germany as a permanent memorial to Marshall Plan assistance, GMF maintains a strong presenceon both sides o the Atlantic. In addition to its headquarters in Washington, DC, GMF has seven oces in Europe: Ber-lin, Bratislava, Paris, Brussels, Belgrade, Ankara, and Bucharest.

    Te Institute or the Study o International Migration is based in the School o Foreign Service at Georgetown Universi-ty. Staed by leading experts on immigration and reugee policy, the Institute draws upon the resources o George town

    University aculty working on international migration and related issues on the main campus and in the law center. Itconducts research and convenes workshops and conerences on immigration and reugee law and policies. In addition,the Institute seeks to stimulate more objective and well-documented migration research by convening research sympo-sia and publishing an academic journal that provides an opportunity or the sharing o research in progress as well asnished projects.

    Te UN University established by the UN General Assembly in 1973, is an international community o scholars en-gaged in research, advanced training and the dissemination o knowledge related to pressing global problems. Activi-ties ocus mainly on peace and conict resolution, sustainable development and the use o science and technology toadvance human welare. Te Universitys Institute or Environment and Human Security addresses risks and vulner-abilities that are the consequence o complex environmental hazards, including climate change, which may aect sus-tainable development. It aims to improve the in-depth understanding o the cause eect relationships to nd possibleways to reduce risks and vulnerabilities. Te Institute is conceived to support policy and decision makers with authori-tative research and inormation.