Project Introction
Migration and climate change
Published:2013-08-02 Hits:845

Research Team Leaders:Xizhe PENG


a. Objectives

Interest in the impact of anthropogenic climate change on population distributions and migration has grown steadily amongst policy makers, scientists and academics over the past quarter of a century. Yet, despite this interest, the links between anthropogenic climate change and migration remain cloudy and contested. This research seeks to generate new knowledge and explore the impact of extreme events driven by climatic variability on migration. Specifically, the research investigates how and why some people use mobility as a response to environmental shocks whilst others do not. Furthermore, the research explores the role of mobility in determining resilience during environmental shocks. 


b. Fit to Fudan Tyndall Centre Research Strategy 

The project is vital to help enhance food, water and human security by understanding the links between environmental change, agriculture and migration. Additionally the research provides cross-scale information on factors that contribute to the resilience and vulnerability of rural communities and urban migrants under climatically driven environmental change (that will become more common in the future). These contributions are closely aligned the Fudan Tyndall Centre Research Strategy themes of Water and Land and Cities and Coasts. 


c. Methods

The data collection and analysis uses a mixture of quantitative and qualitative methods to understand the impact of a specific flood and drought event on migration in rural agricultural communities in Anhui. Additionally, the research will interview migrants in receiving areas (including Shanghai) who originate from Anhui to link migrant origin and destination. Statistical techniques (event history analysis or logistic regression) will be used to explore the relationship between the flood and drought event and migration decisions. This information will be triangulated with qualitative methods and analysis to increase understanding of the pathways through which flood and drought events effect migration decisions. The research is focused primarily at the micro level (rural communities and urban migrants) although other levels of analysis (provincial, prefectural, county and township for example) will be explored through secondary data sources.


d. International Collaborations

  • Prof. Declan CONWAY, School of International Development, UEA
  • Dr. Catherine LOCKE, School of International Development, UEA
  • Prof. PENG Xizhe, State Innovative Institute for Public Management and Public Policy Studies, Fudan University
  • Dr. WU Kaiya, State Innovative Institute for Public Management and Public Policy Studies, Fudan University
  • Mark TEBBOTH, PhD Student, University of East Anglia.


e. Outputs.

  • Development and operationalization of a new model to explore analytically the links between migration, climate change and agricultural variability.
  • Empirical, policy-relevant information for planners to assess likely impact of climate change human mobility.
  • PhD thesis and journal articles examining the links between climate change, migration and agricultural variability.