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Resilient Islands


This is a crucial time for global climate action. World leaders must make evidence informed policy decisions. Our cross cutting work offers new research and analysis across finance, trade and adaptation.

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‘Resilient islands’ distils expert analysis on the multidimensional challenges facing Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and the strategies and opportunities for collective action in the 21st century to tackle these.

Small island nations call for deep reform of climate finance

The Covid-19 pandemic and its economic fallout have been disastrous for Small Island Developing States (SIDS), which were already highly vulnerable to climate change and other shocks and stresses. A policy roundtable at ODI on 28 July 2021, convened by Courtenay Rattray, High Representative, UNOHRLLS, and Dr Emily Wilkinson, Senior Research Fellow, ODI, examined SIDS’ special case for finance and debt relief – and highlighted specific action areas that international donors and financial institutions could take to support SIDS, on the road to COP26 in Glasgow and beyond.

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Small-Island Developing States need urgent support to avoid debt defaults

In the lead up to COP26, clear plans are needed to resolve the debt crisis in the short term and debt sustainability over the longer-term – so SIDS reduce their vulnerability to climate change and other shocks.

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H.E. Courtenay Rattray on how the international financial architecture could be adjusted to reflect SIDS’ realities

Mr Rattray of UNOHRLLS has suggested that sustainable access of SIDS to development finance cannot be achieved without progress in reforming the international debt architecture.

Coordinated action at the international level is key to addressing SIDS’ debt crisis: Baroness Patricia Scotland QC

At a recent ODI policy roundtable, Baronness Scotland said: “Simplified and more accessible global climate finance architecture, mechanisms and tools are needed to deliver international financial assistance and debt relief."

Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, H.E. Gaston Browne, on why the run-up to COP26 is a critical moment for SIDS’ development partners

“The international community (should) create the enabling environment for us to climb to greater heights and achieve our ambitions."

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The team

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In the media

The Caribbean must think carefully about how and where to ‘build back better’ after the hurricanes of 2017

"Building back better” to create more resilient societies is a laudable goal, but every country is different and there are no quick fixes.

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Opinion: To finance resilience in small states, governments and development partners must take some risks

After Hurricane Maria swept through Dominica in 2017, causing extensive damage to crops, livestock, and 90% of homes, and generating losses of 226% of its gross domestic product — this island of some 70,000 people set out a bold vision to become the world’s first climate-resilient nation

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