- Catherine Doe Adodoadji
- Email address:
- Thesis title:
- Climate Change and Vulnerable Coastal Communities in Ghana (working title)
Coastal communities in developing countries are highly vulnerable to climate change and climatic variability. They are at risk from the increased frequency and intensity of extreme-weather events as well as sea-level rise associated with climate change. Over the years individuals and communities have generally devised their own strategies to cope with climate change. However in recent years the accelerated rate and scale at which anthropogenically induced environmental changes occur and the uncertainties inherent in climate projections have put local adaptation strategies under considerable stress. To address this challenge, efforts are being made at both the national and international level to mainstream adaptation measures into national development projects and programs so that individuals and communities can deal more efficiently with current climate challenges.
The local level has been identified as important for mainstreaming climate change adaptation mainly because climate change impacts are manifested locally affecting local livelihood and activities. However since decisions that affect local actors often take place at higher levels, where they are poorly represented, their concerns are often not incorporated into national priorities or projects. This often affects their ability to adapt effectively to climate change impacts.
The main objective of this research is to examine how the adaptation strategies deployed by coastal urban dwellers interact with formal climate policies / initiatives to reduce vulnerability to climate change impacts in Ghana. Data on vulnerability and local adaptation strategies of individuals and communities will be collected by assessing livelihood strategies as well as the determinants of vulnerability to climate change impacts i.e. exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity.
The study will also analyze Ghana’s environmental policy processes to understand the ways by which climate change adaptation gets incorporated into political discourses, the process of negotiation between various actors with different interests, and how this influences adaptation options and vulnerability in general.