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Climate change, conflict and security scan: analysis of current thinking December 2018–March 2019


Written by Katie Peters, Leigh Mayhew, Olena Borodyna

In this third climate change, conflict and security scan, covering December 2018 to March 2019, we have witnessed an astonishing array of new publications – reviewed through our summary of academic articles and grey literature, debates and announcements, and of the blogosphere and opinions found on Twitter.

Many new authors appear in our bibliography and there is a completely new list of top five individuals tweeting, which reveals that the breadth of individuals and agencies engaging in the topic continues to expand.

Debate rages about the place of climate change in US national security priorities, and there is analysis on international and transboundary dimensions of the climate–security nexus, with literature pointing to potential ways forward for such challenges in the context of:

  • territory allocation in the Arctic
  • regional cooperation around shared natural resources in Africa and Asia
  • understanding and responding to changing patterns of human mobility across borders.

Themes that have become more prominent in this scan include urban landscapes, human mobility, and rights and justice.

As with earlier scans, we aim to provide time-poor policy-makers, practitioners and academics with a summary of the new knowledge and evidence that has emerged over a four-month period. As described in the methodology for each section, the scan is not exhaustive but provides a good starting point for anyone wanting to better understand the nexus.

Katie Peters, Leigh Mayhew, Olena Borodyna, Hannah Measures, Kristina Petrova, Christie Nicoson, Pernilla Nordqvist and Laura E.R. Peters