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Dr Hanna Ruszczyk, a research associate at the Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience (IHRR), has co-authored a publication on climate change and crisis narratives in the journal Urban Geography.

In response to narratives of the mass movement of people triggered by climate change, a number of “managed retreat” models have been proposed as policy options, especially for densely populated urban areas in the Global South. Reviewing a case study from Mongla, a secondary city in southwestern Bangladesh, we argue that a “crisis narrative” unhelpfully informs current discourses of “climate migration”, and oversimplify complex realities, creating the risk that urban policy makers design managed retreat interventions that are poorly informed and maladaptive in that they may be accepted too uncritically, take overly technical forms, and may exacerbate rather than reduce the risk faced by those they are purportedly intended to assist.

This publication was also co-authored by Prof. Andrew Baldwin in the Geography Department. 

Rahman, MF, Lewis, D, Kuhl, L, Baldwin A, Ruszczyk, HA, Nadiruzzaman, MD and Mahid, Y (2023) ‘Managed Urban Retreat: The Trouble with Crisis Narratives’, Urban Geography.

key words: climate migration, climate relocation, migrant-friendly cities, social justice, environmental sustainability

Find out more about Hanna's research:

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