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Message posted on 13/11/2020

CfP: Special Issue on "Ethics of Climate Adaptation" [reminder]

apologies for cross-posting

Special Issue in Sustainability: Ethics of Climate Adaptation

It is now widely accepted by climate scientists that climate change requires both mitigation actions to reduce climate change and adaptation to cope with its effects, such as increased droughts, heat waves, and flooding. In recent years, resilience has emerged as one of the leading paradigms for adaptation policies. These policies prompt important ethical questions. First, climate adaptation and resilience policies establish a role division in terms of who has to do what, with that settling questions about which parties are included and excluded, and which parties are beneficiaries, victimized, and forgotten. These policies confront us with strong queries about social justice and responsibility, necessitating critical reflection. Second, addressing the different effects of climate change may require conflicting interventions. For example, strategies to prevent flooding may conflict with drought strategies or ecological objectives. This prompts questions about how to reconcile or prioritize these different interventions and about whose claims to acknowledge. Additionally, addressing issues of climate change involves a long-term planning orientation taking place at different territorial scales. This may shift the focus away from the everyday environmental justice struggles that local communities are currently struggling with. Third, climate adaptation policies demand new kinds of solutions, which to a large extent are informed by scientific expertise. The way these science-based activities affect matters of social justice often seem to focus mainly on the effectiveness of policies instead of their legitimacy. This calls for critical analysis of the interwoven character of scientific knowledge development, policy-making, and societal impacts, and particularly the epistemic injustices that emerge when local knowledge is dismissed.

This Special Issue aims to address the different ethical questions raised by climate adaptation from a multidisciplinary angle. We especially welcome papers on the following topics:

  • The inclusion and exclusion of specific social groups in climate politics;

  • The designation of responsibilities to actors regarding climate adaptation and resilience policies;

  • Scalar politics in climate adaptation policy, as climate change issues transcend geographical, administrative, and temporal scales;

  • The conceptual and/or empirical influence of resilience studies on climate adaptation policies and the impact of social justice;

  • Questions of epistemic justice and the role of local knowledge in climate adaptation and resilience policies;

  • Quantitative approaches that allow for modelling ethical considerations in climate adaptation and resilience policies.

For more information:

Prof. Dr. Neelke Doorn Dr. Udo Pesch Guest Editors

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