Resilience, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation

Ian Christoplos is currently finalising a four year Danish Institute for International Studies research programme that has investigated how local authorities at district and municipal levels are innovating and responding to extreme climate events in Uganda, Zambia, Nepal and Vietnam (see http://diis.dk/node/4596). In a related research project, Ian Christoplos and his team have analysed the application of human rights based approaches to climate change adaptation in Cambodia and Kenya.

A particular focus of our work has been to find appropriate and sustainable ways to reduce disaster risk while taking into account the need to maintain motivation and sustainability in local organisations. Ian’s work in risk reduction has always emphasised attention to the realities of how local authorities and civil society organisations develop their capacities and respond to challenges in risk and post-disaster/post-conflict recovery. This is reflected in our analyses of the institutional dimensions of post-conflict recovery and climate change, for example, in how extension agencies, farmer organisations and private actors in value chains have been engaged in rural development in Afghanistan and Bosnia Herzegovina, and in responding to extreme climate events in Viet Nam.

Our work involves analysis of policies to encourage a shift of attention within the climate change discourse to institutional change factors. Ian Christoplos was lead author for the report on the Human Dimensions of Climate Change for the Swedish-led Commission on Climate Change and Development, and more recently for a Danish Institute for International Studies report entitled Towards ‘Good Enough’ Climate and Disaster Risk Governance: Emerging lessons from Zambia, Nepal, Viet Nam and Uganda, which was also used part of UNDP’s contributions to the Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction.

Our earlier work in risk reduction has included assignments with the British Red Cross and the ProVention Consortium that have integrated analyses of natural hazards and conflict. We have led evaluations of the Secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction for OCHA and UNDP’s disaster reduction programme in Vietnam. The resilience aspects of our work have increasingly focused on analysing the practical aspects of the integration of climate change adaptation efforts into overall programming. Ian led a major synthesis review of Sida’s resilience-related programming that sought to clarify how these concepts are brought together in existing aid programming.

Recent assignments

2016 – Present NIRAS Indevelop

Researcher responsible for political economy analysis and promoting research into use, collaborating with Lund University on a DFID financed research programme focused on sustainable and equitable agricultural intensification in Malawi, Tanzania and Zambia.

2009 – Present  Danish Institute for International Studies

Senior researcher: Analysis of issues related to the role of local institutions in relation to poverty and natural resource management, with particular focus on climate change and disaster risk reduction. Leader of the Danida funded research project on Climate Change and Rural Institutions in Viet Nam, Nepal, Uganda and Zambia.

2015  Danish Institute for International Studies

Leader of a research project analyzing civil society efforts to integrate climate change and human rights policies and programming in Cambodia and Kenya

2012  Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency

Team leader: Review of Sida’s current interventions with a particular relevance for disaster risk reduction and resilience and with a focus on the agricultural and water sectors.

2005  United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Team leader: Evaluation of the performance of the Secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR).

Selected publications

Christoplos, Ian, Le Duc Ngoan, Le Thi Hoa Sen, Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong, Huy Nguyen, 2016 (forthcoming) Changing Arenas for Agricultural Climate Change Adaptation in Viet Nam, Development in Practice

Christoplos, Ian, et al, 2016 (forthcoming), Understanding sub-national climate governance: Findings from Nepal, Uganda, Vietnam and Zambia, DIIS Research Report

Christoplos, Ian, Le Duc Ngoan, Le Thi Hoa Sen, Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong, Lily Salloum Lindegaard, 2016 (forthcoming), The Evolving Local Social Contract for Managing Climate and Disaster Risk in Viet Nam, Disasters

Christoplos, Ian, Colleen McGinn, 2016, Climate change adaptation from a human rights perspective: Civil society experiences, Forum for Development Studies

Christoplos, Ian, Le Duc Ngoan, Le Thi Hoa Sen, Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong, 2015, Local Government and Climate Change Adaptation in Viet Nam, DIIS Policy Brief July 2015

Christoplos, Ian, 2015, Resilience…just for the resilient?, in Kelman, I. and L.M. Stough (eds) Disability and Disaster: Explorations and Exchanges, Palgrave

Christoplos, Ian, Mikkel Funder, Colleen McGinn, Winnie Wairimu, 2014, Human Rights Perspectives on Climate Change Adaptation: Civil society lessons, experiences and opportunities in Cambodia and Kenya, DIIS Report 2014:30

Christoplos, Ian, Mikkel Funder, Colleen McGinn, Winnie Wairimu, 2014, The Role of Human Rights in Climate Change Adaptation, DIIS Policy Brief December 2014

Christoplos, Ian et al, 2014, Towards ’Good Enough’ Climate and Disaster Risk Governance: Emerging lessons from Zambia, Nepal, Viet Nam and Uganda, DIIS Report 2014:21

Christoplos, Ian, 2014, Resilience, rights and results in Swedish development cooperation, Resilience: International Policies, Practices and Discourses

Christoplos, Ian, Minnie Novaky and Yasemin Aysan, 2012, Resilience, Risk and Vulnerability at Sida, Sida Decentralised Evaluations 2012:27

Christoplos, Ian, Tomás Rodríguez, E. Lisa Schipper, Eddy Alberto Narvaez, Karla Maria Bayres Mejia, Rolando Buitrago, Ligia Gómez and Francisco J. Pérez, 2010, Learning from recovery after Hurricane Mitch, Disasters, 34/Supplement 2

Christoplos, Ian, Simon Anderson, Margaret Arnold, Victor Galaz, Merylyn Hedger and Richard Klein, 2009, The Human Dimension of Climate Adaptation: The Importance of Local and Institutional Issues, Commission on Climate Change and Development, Stockholm

Christoplos, Ian, 2003, Actors in Risk, in Mark Pelling (ed), Natural Disaster and Development in a Globalizing World, Routledge, London