Climate mobilities into cities: A systematic review of literature from 2011 to 2020

Journal article

The relationship of climate change with human migration and mobility has been of interest to researchers and policymakers for >25 years but the past decade has seen a marked growth of attention on climate migration into cities. This paper offers a systematic review of publications across disciplines from 2011 to 2020 on the relationship. An initial 1037 publications on climate change, migration and urban development have been considered and it is shown that their appearance is closely related to the publication of influential policy documents on climate migration. A subset of 173 publications is reviewed in greater depth and urban informality, labour migration and policy intervention are identified as key topics that have been studied. This literature is disproportionally focused on South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa as well as large cities. Much attention continues to be directed towards the importance of climate change in the causes for migration although multiple conceptual and methodological difficulties are identified. Based on the findings, a research agenda for future research on climate mobilities are identified: the importance of scientific definitions of migrants and mobilities, sophisticated conceptualisations of the causalities that structure climate mobilities, and a better understanding of how those mobilities reconfigure urban informalities.

Jin-ho Chung, Bhawani Buswala, Michael Keith and Tim Schwanen (2022) Climate mobilities into cities: A systematic review of literature from 2011 to 2020, Urban Climate, DOI:

Jin-Ho Chung
Bhawani Buswala
Michael Keith
Tim Schwanen
Sustainable Cities