Policy Brief No.80 - June, 2020
Decision makers and practitioners have expressed a strong interest in the security implications of climate change since the mid-2000s. In response to this, researchers have produced an impressive literature on climate change and violent conflict. This literature and the resulting discourse are strongly shaped by quantitative research, that is, by statistical studies of a large number of cases. This policy brief identifies eight limitations of quantitative climate-conflict research, outlines the resulting knowledge gaps, and suggests ways to address them.
Policy Brief No.79 - June, 2020
While migration as an adaptation strategy appears to be a possible solution for Pacific communities vulnerable to the effects of climate change, without proper planning and preparation, and the involvement and consent of people, it could also potentially lead to forced displacement. This paper reflects on the relocation of the Gilbertese from the Southern Gilbert Islands to Phoenix Islands, and eventually to the Solomon Islands in the 1960s. The planning of the relocation, especially from the Phoenix Islands to the Solomon Islands, and the experiences of the people, provide important lessons that can be used to inform future climate change induced migration and displacement in the Pacific Islands.
Policy Brief No.77 - June, 2020
This policy brief explores the role of the military in responding to natural disasters. It first draws a linkage between disasters and security broadly, then examines the ways in which military and defence resources might be mobilised in response to these disasters. It looks at the important role of perceptions of the military’s role in responding to natural disasters—their own and those of others—and concludes with an assessment of how different countries have navigated this issue and carved out a specific role for the military in responding to natural disasters. The policy brief refers to two case studies, the bushfires in Australia in 2019-20 and floods in Myanmar in 2015, and concludes with policy recommendations.
Policy Brief No.76 - May, 2020
This Policy Brief tries to do the seemingly impossible: to lay open the relations between spheres of experiences and activities that at first sight are worlds apart, such as debates in the UN Security Council and stories told in a village on a small Pacific island, decisions taken (or not taken) by so-called world leaders in New York and by local village elders; and it tries to explain why revealing these relations matters for peacebuilding and policy advice in our current era of climate change. The paper commences with a comparison between the two existential threats mankind is confronted with today: nuclear threat and the threat of climate change, and builds a case for peace research to engage with climate change. Flowing from the identification of gaps and shortcomings in the debate, an innovative Pacific eco-relational approach is presented.
Policy Brief No.74 - May, 2020
In September 2019, Toda Peace Institute held a workshop which facilitated dialogue between three groups of Climate Change experts. The aim was to generate shared analysis of challenges and, wherever possible, joint or coordinated practical responses. The meeting was structured to have a ‘triangular’ format. First, contributors working in the international realm presented their analyses to scholars and practitioners from Pacific Island countries and Japan. Second, Pacific Islanders presented their local and regional research findings, and their practice-based approaches, to the international and Japanese experts. In a third step, Japanese presenters outlined the state of the debate in Japan for the benefit of the Pacific Islanders and international experts. This policy brief draws together the main challenges and perspectives that emerged from that meeting, with illustrative case studies and recommended approaches for linking academic research, policy and practice.