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Accepted Paper:

Climate Change and the Intensification of Farmer-Herder Conflicts in Nigeria  
Gordon Crawford (Coventry University) Zainab Mai-Bornu (University of Leicester)

Paper short abstract:

This paper examines the intensification of herder-farmer conflicts in Nigeria due to climate change, and explores their impact at local level and national and local interventions to resolve them, including through natural resource governance.

Paper long abstract:

Herder-farmer conflicts in West Africa are not new. However, environmental changes driven by climate change are intensifying the frequency and scale of such conflicts, with increasing destruction and fatalities and the greatest impact on marginalised groups. This is notably so in Northern Nigeria as well as other parts of West Africa. The paper investigates conflicts between crop farmers and nomadic herders over land and other natural resources in Nigeria. It explores the key drivers of conflict, including climate change, increases in population and human settlement, and changes in traditional modes of agriculture. These drivers increase competition for dwindling natural resources leading to conflicting claims and rights to farmland, pastures and water bodies, and in turn to violent conflict. The paper examines the impacts of such conflicts on local communities and their livelihoods, especially those of marginalised groups, such as women and youth. Additionally it analyses conceptions of conflict and the efficacy of interventions at local and national levels by state, traditional authorities and civil society organisations aimed at conflict resolution. Further, it explores wider approaches to natural resource governance to address both the drivers of conflict, notably climate change, and to build community trust and cohesion.

Panel P31
Climate Change, Conflict and Local Agency
  Session 1 Friday 30 June, 2023, -