Seminar: Investigating the links between social stress and conflict from climate change
Time: 12:30 - 14:00
Changing weather patterns and other physical processes associated with climate change can amplify common drivers of armed conflict and social unrest, namely economic underperformance, food insecurity, and human displacement. The effects on conflict, however, will vary because the immediate and long-term impacts of climatic shocks depend on the affected societies’ resilience and adaptive capacity. In this talk, Elisabeth will investigate how global conflict risks vary along different future socioeconomic scenarios as well as the evidence for indirect links between climate change and the propensity for conflict. The long-term projections for future armed conflicts highlights the importance of economic growth and broad societal development for attaining both climate policy goals and global peace. However, we find only weak evidence for links in the contemporaneous record of conflict and climate change through either economic performance or food prices. Elisabeth will conclude with a discussion of her new project on migration and human displacement as an indicator of social stress to climatic changes and its implications for social unrest and violence in both the receiving and originating communities.
Elisabeth Gilmore is an Assistant Professor in the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland, College Park. In January 2017, she will be an Associate Professor in the Department of International Development, Community and Environment at Clark University. Her research focuses on three related streams: 1) Quantifying the societal and economic impacts of climate change; 2) Evaluating the potential for low carbon energy technologies for climate mitigation and societal development; 3) Applying data and modeling tools, specifically integrated assessment models, for decision-making and regulatory analysis. Presently, she is lead PI on a Department of Defense, Minerva Research Initiative award on modeling civil conflict under different climate change scenarios. She received a dual PhD in Engineering and Public Policy and Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. She also hold a Masters and Bachelor degree in Chemical and Environmental Engineering from the University of Toronto, Canada.