Climate Change

Climate change affects world's poorest and most vulnerable people, who often lack the robust systems and capacity needed to cope. While 'mitigation' through tackling greenhouse gas emissions is crucial to limiting impacts, some change is inevitable and climate change 'adaptation' is now central to development.

Rokshana (8) and Laila (8) walk through flood waters on their way to school in Bishambarpur. During monsoons most of the children can not attend school because of flooding. G.M.B. Akash/Panos Pictures

Efforts to integrate climate change adaptation into the development process must ensure that the most vulnerable groups are central to the rapidly expanding climate change research and policy agenda. At the same time, future international climate change regimes must be built on principles of equity, deliver dramatic carbon reductions, establish low-carbon development pathways and provide funding mechanisms that reach the most vulnerable people.

IDS researchers and knowldge professionals are carrying out research and policy analysis on climate change, to build adaptation and disaster risk reduction policies that contribute to eradicating poverty; improve our understanding of whose voices and whose knowledge counts in climate policies and meet the challenge of achieving sustainable economic growth through low-carbon development. They do this in multiple ways:

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Photo of Alan Stanley from IDS Knowledge Services More details

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Photo of John Thompson, a Research Fellow in the IDS Rural Futures research cluster More details

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Bangladesh Alumni Ambassador More details

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Stephen Spratt, IDS Research Fellow More details

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Addressing Synergies and Trade-Offs between Goals for Climate-Resilient Agricultural Systems

What factors lead state and market actors in Africa to commit to implementing more ‘climate smart’ and ‘climate resilient’ agricultural approaches and practices that promoting more sustainable and pro-poor outcomes? This study is examining how different governance systems are handling the complex interface between food, energy, water and climate in pursuit of the SDGs pertaining to these sectors in four countries in Africa. More details

Building Resilience and Inclusion in Sub-Saharan Africa through Social Learning around Climate Risks

Sub-Saharan Africa is particularly vulnerable to droughts, floods and other climate-related stressors and shocks. This research aims to contribute to greater understanding of the underlying drivers of risk, while also identifying pathways to improve the impact that climatic information may have on building resilience through bridging the 'usability gap'. More details

Climate Change, Uncertainty and Transformation

This project sees uncertainty as a key barrier to efforts to support social transformation to respond to the challenges posed by climate change. More details

Development and Management of NAMAs in India

The overall objective of the project is that the Government of India starts using Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action (NAMA) as one of the mechanisms for addressing climate change mitigation. More details

DFID Innovation Prizes for Environment and Development

Running innovation prizes that will improve poor people's resilience to climate change. More details

Economic Impacts of Climate Change in Ethiopia

Pilot project to develop a dynamic multisectoral modelling framework for climate change impact and adaptation policy assessment. More details

Economic Modeling of Climate Change Adaptation: Case Studies for Ethiopia, Mozambique and Ghana

This project involves a case-study approach to develop an economywide modeling framework for comparative analysis of climate change adaptation strategies linked to impact models. More details

Future Agricultures Consortium

The DFID funded Future Agricultures Consortium is an Africa-based alliance of research organisations seeking to provide timely, high-quality and independent information and advice to improve agricultural policy and practice in Africa. More details

Global Food and Farming Futures – Lead Expert Group

The Foresight Project on Global Food and Farming Futures addresses the question: ‘How can a future global population of 9 billion people all be fed healthily and sustainably?' More details

Green Growth Diagnostics for Africa

This project is looking into the heart of the electricity supply crisis in sub-Saharan Africa. More details

HUMPOL Courting Catastrophe?

Courting Catastrophe is looking at how the humanitarian sector needs to change to meet this challenge, with research in countries in Asia and Africa to develop new ways of acting. More details

International Climate Fund: Enhancing Capacity to Deliver on Gender

A partnership between Coffey, IDS and RICARDO AEA has been formed to improve mainstreaming and targeting of women and girls in the International Climate Fund. More details

Joto Afrika - a bilingual briefing series on climate change adaptation in Africa

A briefing series on climate adaptation which draws lessons, experiences and practical information from across sub-Saharan Africa. More details

Knowledge Navigator - your key to online Climate Change platforms

The Knowledge Navigator project has developed a web-based interactive tool, called a widget, to guide users through to appropriate climate change websites. It is a joint project between IDS Knowledge Services and the Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) More details

Learning Hub

A place for DFID staff to connect with and learn from fellow country office staff, DFID specialist advisers and technical experts as a basis for creating applied knowledge for dealing with the complexities of climate change in the development arena. More details

Pro-Poor Electricity Provision

This programme will develop and promote evidence-based policy and programme guidance on low carbon energy investments to benefit poor people, especially women and girls. More details

Social, Technological and Environmental Pathways to Sustainability (STEPS) Centre

The STEPS Centre is an interdisciplinary global research and policy engagement hub, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. It aims to develop a new approach to understanding, action and communication on sustainability and development. More details

Who Drives Climate-Relevant Policies in the Rising Powers?

This project is concerned with the political economy analysis of climate change policies. The central question of the project is who drives/obstructs climate change policies in the rising powers, paying special attention to renewable energy policies. More details

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IDS In Focus Policy Briefing

Building Climate Change Resilient Cities

IDS In Focus Policy Briefing 2.6 (2007)
IDS publications on international development research

ESPACE - A New Transnational Approach to Adapting to the Impacts of Climate Change

Umweltbildung, Umweltkommunikation und Nachhaltigkeit (Environmental Education, Communication and Sustainability) 26: Information, Communication and Education on Climate Change - European Perspective (2007)
IDS publications on international development research

Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change

The impacts of climate change are already being observed in a variety of sectors and there is greater clarity that these changes are being caused by human activities, mainly through release of greenhouse gases. In 2005 the UK Government hosted the Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change conference to take an in-depth look at the scientific issues associated with climate change. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Adapting to Climate Change: Challenges and Opportunities for the Development Community

Report (2006)

The profile of climate change has risen from an environmental issue to a major development issue, billed in a recent UK White Paper as the 'biggest threat facing the world'. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Overcoming the Barriers: Mainstreaming Climate Change Adaptation in Developing Countries

Tearfund Climate Change Briefing Paper 1 (2006)

Climate change is a huge threat to all aspects of human development and is a threat to the Millennium Development Goals for poverty reduction. Until recently, donor agencies, national and local layers of government, and non-governmental organisations have paid little attention to the risks associated with climate change. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Linking Climate Change Adaptation: A Research Agenda

IDS Bulletin 36.4 (2005)

The objective of the linking Climate Change Adaptation (LCA) Project was to ensure that poor people benefit from adaptation processes rather than bearing burdens by, for example, having the risks caused by climate change shifted in their direction. More details

Front cover of Bulletin 36.4, Vulnerability, Adaptation and Climate Disasters

Vulnerability, Adaptation and Climate Disasters

IDS Bulletin 36.4 (2005)

This IDS Bulletin aims to provide policy-relevant research insights for a wide range of actors interested in climate change adaptation. It brings together results from a recently completed interdisciplinary research project, the Linking Climate Adaptation Project, about how vulnerable communities might respond to the impacts of climate change. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Climate Change and Carbon Markets: A Handbook of Emissions Reduction Mechanisms

This book is a guide for national and international policy-makers and industry professionals who need to understand the carbon markets established pursuant to the Kyoto protocol, one of the most complex agreements ever negotiated. More details