Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 481190
Title Environmental drivers of human migration in drylands - A spatial picture
Author(s) Neumann, K.; Sietz, D.; Hilderink, H.; Janssen, P.; Kok, M.; Dijk, H. van
Source Applied Geography 56 (2015). - ISSN 0143-6228 - p. 116 - 126.
Department(s) Laboratory of Geo-information Science and Remote Sensing
Sociology of Development and Change
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2015
Keyword(s) burkina-faso - northeast brazil - climate-change - land-use - drought - vulnerability - adaptation - dynamics - africa - management
Abstract It is widely accepted that environmental change can influence human migration. In particular, the environment plays a role in migration processes in drylands, in which environmental change—including increasing variability of rainfall, increasing frequency of droughts, chronic water shortage, and land degradation—can heavily influence migration. However, systematic large-scale studies of the relationship between environmental factors and human migration are rare, and a global, consistent picture of environmental drivers of migration is lacking. In this study, we sought to fill this gap by analysing spatial patterns of environmental drivers of migration in drylands by performing a cluster analysis on spatially explicit global data. In this analysis, we focused explicitly on precipitation, aridity, drought, land degradation, soil constraints, and availability of cropland and pastures as potential environmental drivers of migration in drylands. In addition, we linked the identified clusters to two observed hotspots of out-migration—Burkina Faso and Northeast Brazil—to gauge the cluster results. Our results show that environmental drivers can be grouped into eight distinct clusters, and we identified the most severe environmental constraints for each cluster. These results suggest that out-migration—both in absolute and relative terms—occurs most frequently in a cluster that is constrained primarily by land degradation rather than water availability.
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