The purpose of this paper is to show how typologies for environmentally induced population movement need to be understood in a contextualised manner in order to be useful.
This study interrogates some academic discourses concerning environmentally induced population movement. By analysing key environmental factors said to contribute to population movement, in addition to considering time factors, this study uses the case of Tuvalu to demonstrate overlapping categories and the importance of contextualisation.
Current typologies provide a basis for considering a wide variety of motives for environmentally induced population movement, in relation to different drivers, motivations, time scales, and space scales. Yet contextualisation is required for policy and practice relevance.
All typologies have limitations. Any typology should be taken as a possible tool to apply in a particular context, or to support decision making, rather than presenting a typology as universal or as an absolute without dispute.
Rather than disputes over typologies and definitions, bringing together different views without reconciling them, but recognising the merits and limitations of each, can provide a basis for assisting people making migration decisions.
None of the typologies currently available applies to all contexts of environmentally induced population movement – nor should any single typology necessarily achieve that. Instead, it is important to thrive on the differences and to contextualise a typology for use.
Robert Stojanov, Ilan Kelman, Shawn Shen, Barbora Duží, Himani Upadhyay, Dmytro Vikhrov, G.J. Lingaraj and Arabinda Mishra (2014) "Contextualising typologies of environmentally induced population movement", Disaster Prevention and Management, Vol. 23 No. 5, pp. 508-523Download as .RIS
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