Climate, Conflict and Forced Migration
Guy Abel (),
Michael Brottrager (),
Jesus Crespo Cuaresma () and
Raya Muttarak ()
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Guy Abel: School of Sociology and Political Science, Shanghai University
Michael Brottrager: Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University
Raya Muttarak: School of International Development, University of East Anglia
Department of Economics Working Papers from Vienna University of Economics and Business, Department of Economics
Despite the lack of robust empirical evidence, a growing number of media reports attempt to link climate change to the ongoing violent conflicts in Syria and other parts of the world, as well as to the migration crisis in Europe. Exploiting bilateral data on asylum seeking applications for 157 countries over the period 2006-2015, we assess the determinants of refugee flows using a gravity model which accounts for endogenous selection in order to examine the causal link between climate, conflict and forced migration. Our results indicate that climatic conditions, by affecting drought severity and the likelihood of armed conflict, played a significant role as an explanatory factor for asylum seeking in the period 2011-2015. The effect of climate on conflict occurrence is particularly relevant for countries in Western Asia in the period 2010-2012 during when many countries were undergoing political transformation. This finding suggests that the impact of climate on conflict and asylum seeking flows is limited to specific time period and contexts.
Keywords: forced migration; climate change; conflict (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D74 F22 Q54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dev, nep-env, nep-int and nep-mig
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Working Paper: Climate, Conflict and Forced Migration (2018)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:wiw:wiwwuw:wuwp272
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