In the dichotomy between migrants and refugees/asylum-seekers, the former are typically cast as economically motivated, and set apart from refugees, fleeing war and persecution. Yet environmental changes are increasingly part of migration journeys, and count amongst the factors that call into question the distinction made between migrants and refugees. At the same time, in the international negotiations on climate change, migration is increasingly mooted as a possible adaptation strategy to the impacts of climate change. But only few studies exist as to how migration could actually work for adaptation, and none of them addresses migration in Belgium. This is the goal of this project, delineated into two parts.
- First, the MIGRADAPT project led by the Hugo Observatory will look at the role of the environment as a driver for recent migration to Belgium. While it is unlikely that one could single out environmental changes as a key driver of migration to Belgium, except in exceptional cases, the project will rather attempt to provide an assessment on how migrants perceive the environment to have influenced their migration journey as well as how they perceive current environmental disruption in their countries of origin. Indeed, many countries of origin or of transit of migrants to Belgium are affected by significant environmental disruptions. How are such disruptions perceived by the migrants? Through its innovative theoretical and empirical approach MIGRADAPT will provide scientific evidence on the role of environmental drivers in migration decisions and on how perceived and observed environmental changes exacerbate pre-existing migration flows to Belgium through its impacts on the other most commonly addressed drivers of migration, such political and economic factors. Moreover, the project will show how environmental disruptions not only affect the first stage of human mobility from their countries of origin, but also how environmental stressors intervene throughout migrants ‘fragmented journeys’, including their potential to alter migratory routes and destinations entirely.
- Second, MIGRADAPT seeks to understand how migrants can support the adaptation and resilience of their communities of origin. How and under which conditions can migration support the adaptation and resilience of communities affected by environmental changes?
MIGRADAPT will provide evidence on how and under which conditions migration to Belgium can support the adaptation and resilience of origin communities and also on how the perception that migrants have on environmental shocks in their origin communities can impact the amount, form, and use of the socio-economic remittances that they send. Through its transnational and multi-sited methodology that captures both the drivers and impacts of migration, MIGRADAPT will address the multifactor aspect of the dynamics of environmental migration and its implications for both migrants and those remaining in communities of origin.
- Newsletter # 1 (focused on fieldwork in Senegal): in english En FRANCAIS
- Newsletter # 2 (focused on fieldwork in Morocco): in english en français
- Newsletter #3 (focused on fieldwork in Belgium): In english en francais
- Newsletter #4 (focused on fieldwork in Senegal): In english en francais
- Newsletter #5 (focused on fieldwork in the Democratic Republic of the Congo): In english en francais
- Newsletter #6 (focused on fieldwork in Belgium): In english en francais
- Policy Brief n° 1: Environmental migration in Morocco: The case of Tangier and Tinghir
- Policy Brief n° 2: Environmental migration : The connections between n orthern Senegal and Belgium
- Policy Brief n° 3: Environment and migration in DRC: The case of Kinshasa and Goma
- Des migrants « agents adaptatifs » pour leur communauté d’origine ? Analyse translocale des transferts politiques dans un contexte de changements socio-environnementaux. Le cas des Haalpulaar du Sénégal en Belgique. Doctoral thesis by Samuel Lietaer.
- Gender, Environmental Change, and Migration Aspirations and Abilities in Tangier and Tinghir, Morocco, by Lore Van Praag, published in Human Ecology.
- A Qualitative Study on How Perceptions of Environmental Changes are Linked to Migration in Morocco, Senegal, and DR Congo, by Lore Van Praag, Samuel Lietaer, and Caroline Michellier, published in Human Ecology.
- Ne pas revenir pour mieux soutenir? by Samuel Lietaer, Loïc Brüning, and Coumba Ndoffene Faye, published in Emulations - Revue de sciences sociales
- A qualitative study of the migration-adaptation nexus to deal with environmental change in Tinghir and Tangier (Morocco) by Lore Van Praag, published in Journal of Integrative Environmental Sciences
- Can I move or can I stay? Applying a life course perspective on immobility when facing gradual environmental changes in Morocco by Lore Van Praag, published in Climate Risk Management
- Migration and Environmental Change in Morocco: In Search for Linkages Between Migration Aspirations and (Perceived) Environmental Changes by Lore Van Praag, Loubna Ou-Salah, Elodie Hut, and Caroline Zickgraf, published in IMISCOE Springer
- La migration comme stratégie d'adaptation aux changements environnementaux: réalités empiriques et enjeux politiques by Elodie Hut, Céline Le Flour and Tatiana Castillo Betancourt, published in Science Connection n°64 , pp. 43-47
- Situating ‘migration as adaptation’ discourse and appraising its relevance to Senegal’s development sector, by Samuel Lietaer and David Durand-Delacre, published in Environmental Science & Policy