This article outlines current perspectives on adaptation and discusses what a pro-poor view of adaptation might look like. It argues that an explicit focus on assets, or the resources which people have available to them, adds a valuable perspective to adaptation debates. It discusses three bodies of literature: on climate risk reduction; on household vulnerability; and finally on asset approaches to poverty reduction. In particular focusing on assets highlights the agency of poor people in the face of risks, and draws attention to how risk can be an opportunity as well as a threat.
Martin Prowse and Lucy Scott