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Accepted Paper:

Using a multifactorial overlay approach to identify hotspots of environment-induced migration in three West African countries  
Alina Schürmann (Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg) Justice Nana Inkoom (Institute for Geosciences and Geography) Christopher Conrad (Martin-Luther University Halle-Wittenberg) Janina Kleemann (Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg)

Paper short abstract:

In West Africa, migration is a strategy to cope with adverse living conditions. The aim of this study is to analyze various environmental factors, combined with expert interviews, to identify regions that are least suitable for agriculture-dependent households and which may thus promote migration.

Paper long abstract:

In West Africa, migration has been a strategy to cope with adverse climatic conditions, poverty, and food insecurity for centuries. Environmental conditions, including the frequency of droughts and floods as well as land degradation, are known to influence human migration patterns. Within the MIGRAWARE project, this study aims to identify regions where several unfavorable factors could promote out-migration.

Multiple environmental data sources are being used in the study, including The Climate Hazards Group InfraRed Precipitation With Station Data (CHIRPS) to analyze historical precipitation patterns, and the MODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) dataset to assess land degradation. Time series analyses using Mann-Kendall tests were performed for the period 2000-2021 to quantify temporal trends for the focus countries Burkina Faso, Ghana and Nigeria.

To fully understand the complexity of the migration patterns in our focus countries, the study is also incorporating data on other drivers of migration, such as armed conflict and population density. The interactions between these different drivers are being explored in order to gain a comprehensive understanding of the migration patterns in the region. Additionally, expert interviews were conducted to weight the importance of various factors influencing migration decisions.

The results of this study will help formulate recommendations for stakeholders to better target climate change adaptation measures and the advancement of policies and solutions related to the food-climate-migration nexus in the region. This could include measures such as targeted food assistance programs, investments in infrastructure and services, and policies to promote sustainable land use.

Panel Envi04
African futures: climate change and human mobility
  Session 1 Friday 2 June, 2023, -