SOAS University of London

Centre for Development, Environment and Policy (CeDEP)

Dr Thomas Tanner

BA (Cambridge), MSc (LSE), PhD (University of Leicester)
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Tom Tanner
Centre for Development, Environment and Policy

Reader in Environment and Development

Centre for Sustainable Finance


SOAS South Asia Institute


Dr Thomas Tanner
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Tom is a development geographer with a background in environmental change, development studies, environmental economics and political science. He specialises in building resilience and adaptation to climate change through research, policy and practice. His research interests include climate change policy and planning, anticipatory decision-making, urban resilience, policy processes and political economy, and child-led approaches to resilience. He has extensive research experience in South Asia leading research partnership funded by ESRC, DFID, World Bank and the Rockefeller Foundation, among others. Tom has authored numerous research articles (Google Scholar), co-authored of the leading textbook on Climate Change and Development (2014, Routledge) and edited a book on innovations in Disaster Risk Management (2017, Springer).



Current and recent externally funded projects:

Understanding adaptation planning and finance in South Asia

Research to support knowledge sharing, examining the ACT (Action on Climate Today) programme, a five-year initiative with governments in South Asia to develop and finance adaptation strategies to build resilience to the impact of climate change, funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID).

Forecast-based Early Action

A range of large-scale social protection and risk financing initiatives, as well as promising innovations in forecast-based early action (FbA), have emerged in recent years. The Taking Forecast-Based Early Action to Scale project is funded under the UK Met Offices WISER programme. The project assesses the evidence, political economy and opportunities for institutionalising FbA through modifications to existing forecasting, decision-making, financing and delivery mechanisms.

Triple Dividend of Disaster Risk Management

The Triple Dividend of Resilience is an applied research project working with internationally renowned experts in the economics of disaster risk management, focused on a framework for and evidence of wider breadth of co-benefits from investments to build disaster resilience. A framework for conducting more complete appraisals of investments is now being employed across a variety of international agencies and programming.

Funded by the World Bank’s Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery.


Authored Books

Tanner, Thomas and Horn-Phathanothai, Leo (2014) Climate Change and Development. London, UK: Routledge.


Nightingale, Andrea J and Eriksen, Siri and Taylor, Marcus and Forsyth, Timothy J and Pelling, Mark and Newsham, Andrew and Boyd, Emily and Brown, Katrina and Harvey, Blane and Jones, Lindsey and Bezner Kerr, Rachel and Mehta, Lyla and Naess, Lars Otto and Ockwell, David and Scoones, Ian and Tanner, Thomas and Whitfield, Stephen (2019) 'Climate Solutions Beyond Technical Fixes: addressing the great derangement'. Climate and Development. [Forthcoming]

Tanner, Thomas and Zaman, R.U. and Acharya, S and Gogoi, E and Bahadur, A.V. (2019) 'Influencing resilience: The role of policy entrepreneurs in mainstreaming climate adaptation'. Disasters, (43) S3, pp S388-S411.

Bene, C and Cannon, T and Gupte, J and McGranahan, G and Mehta, L and Tanner, Thomas (2018) 'Resilience as a policy narrative: potentials and limits in the context of urban planning'. Climate and Development, (10) 2, pp 116-133.

Jones, Lindsey and Tanner, Thomas (2017) '‘Subjective resilience’: using perceptions to quantify household resilience to climate extremes and disasters.'. Regional Environmental Change, (17) 1, pp 229-243.

Naess, Lars Otto and Newell, Peter and Newsham, Andrew and Phillips, Jon and Quan, Julian and Tanner, Thomas (2015) 'Climate policy meets national development contexts: Insights from Kenya and Mozambique'. Global Environmental Change, (35), pp 534-544.

Jones, L and Dougill, A and Jones, R and Steynor, A and Watkiss, P and Kane, C and Koelle, B and Moufouma-Okia, W and Padgham, J and Ranger, N and Roux, J-P and Suarez, P and Tanner, Thomas and Vincent, K (2015) 'Ensuring climate information guides long-term development'. Nature Climate Change, (5), pp 812-814.

Haynes, Katharine and Tanner, Thomas (2015) 'Empowering young people and strengthening resilience: Youth-centred participatory video as a tool for climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction'. Children's Geographies, (13) 3, pp 357-371.

Tanner, Thomas and Lewis, D and Wrathall, D and Bronen, R and Cradock-Henry, N and Huq, S and Lawess, C and Nawrotski, R and Prasad, V and Rahman, Md. A and Alaniz, R and King, K and McNamara, K and Nadiruzzaman, Md. and Henly-Shepard, S and Thomalla, F (2015) 'Livelihood resilience in the face of climate change'. Nature Climate Change, (1) 4, pp 23-26.

Bahadur, Aditya and Tanner, Thomas (2014) 'Transformational resilience thinking: Putting people, power and politics at the heart of urban climate resilience'. Environment and Urbanization, (26) 1, pp 200-214.

Bahadur, Aditya V. and Tanner, Thomas (2014) 'Policy climates and climate policies: Analysing the politics of building urban climate change resilience'. Urban Climate, (7), pp 20-32.

Edited Books or Journals

Surminski, Swenja and Tanner, Thomas, (eds.), (2016) Realising the 'Triple Dividend of Resilience': A New Business Case for Disaster Risk Management. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. (Climate Risk Management, Policy and Governance).


This list was last generated on Wednesday, 26th June 2019, 16:53 Europe/London.