Climate change response mechanisms and the risk of increasing vulnerability: conceptual background and pathways of change

Mohamed Behnassi*, Gopichandran Ramachandran, Gita Gill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Climate-induced impacts and disasters are increasingly affecting social-ecological systems worldwide by generating or amplifying risks and vulnerabilities. Yet, climate response mechanisms too may generate similar implications, which may increase the likelihood of conflicts and human displacements. Focusing on adaptation, as one of the mainstays of climate change governance, this chapter aims to highlight that related policies and actions may, in some instances, generate unexpected outcomes and risks which erode resilience instead of building it. To substantiate this, the analysis investigates the drivers, forms, and manifestations of maladaptation by reference to existing theoretical and empirical research. Accordingly, the maladaptation and migration nexus is analyzed from an inclusive governance and science-based policy making perspective. Alternative approaches to address maladaptation to ensure resilience and sustainability through adaptation strategies are identified and discussed as well. Throughout the chapter, the analysis prescribes the needed guidelines to be considered while elaborating, implementing, and evaluating adaptation actions to ensure the achievement of expected outcomes and to avoid potential tradeoffs and negative implications. Results show that some adaptation strategies and interventions in many contexts have undermined the balance of ecosystems and the resilience of local communities, creating additional conditions for increased human insecurity, including the compulsion to migrate.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Climate-Conflict-Migration Nexus from a Human Security Perspective
EditorsMohamed Behnassi, Himangana Gupta, Fred Kruidbos, Anita Parlow
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9783030941444
ISBN (Print)9783030941437
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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