Articles

This page presents all of my publications including peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, policy reviews. This list can also be viewed on my Google Scholar , mon profil ResearchGate et mon compte ORCID account. My public scholarship, outreach, and publications in news media outlets are listed on the media page.

[7] (Mis)representing climate mobilities: lessons from documentary filmmakers (2022, forthcoming)

Durand-Delacre, D. Misrepresenting climate mobilities: lessons from documentary filmmakers. Under review at the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, as part of a special issue on ‘environmental mobilities’.

Climate migration discourses tend to misrepresent the complex realities and experiences of people whose lives are impacted by climate change. All too often, the images conjured are of inevitable, massive, and permanent cross-border movements, contributing to apocalyptic and securitised climate imaginaries that cast migration as a threat to western societies. Climate mobilities scholarship contradicts these assumptions as inaccurate and damaging, with empirical research demonstrating that climate change affects peoples’ realities and experiences of mobilities in varied and multi-faceted ways. And yet, despite these well-established findings, overly simplistic climate migration narratives still abound. This poses a question: how can climate mobilities be better represented? To explore this question, I analyse six documentary films that portray island and coastal communities facing the possibility of migration. Methodologically, I use filmmaker interviews to contextualise the films’ production. Drawing on mobilities theory, I show that understanding the representation process (filmmaking) requires close attention not just to the mobilities of people being represented, but also of those engaged in representation (the filmmakers) and the subsequent circulation of the representation (film) itself. Whose mobilities are prioritised in this process is crucial. Ultimately, I argue that climate mobilities scholarship can learn from the filmmakers’ experiences.

[6] Situating ‘migration as adaptation’ discourse and appraising its relevance to Senegal’s development Sector (2021)

Lietaer, S. & Durand-Delacre, D. (2021) Situating ‘migration as adaptation’ discourse and appraising its relevance to Senegal’s development sector. Environmental Science & Policy 126, 11-21. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2021.09.008

Academic and policy domains are increasingly constructing ‘migration as adaptation’ as a policy ideal against alarmist, security-oriented approaches to the climate-migration nexus. However, our knowledge of how development actors in national contexts view and use migration as adaptation in practice remains limited. Based on 90 interviews with development stakeholders, this paper demonstrates the limited reach of the migration as adaptation policy ideal in Senegal’s development sector. It is considered too vague a concept to operationalise and is in tension with the wider discursive context on migration and development, marked by sedentary bias which requires ‘addressing the root causes of migration’, including environmental change, to ‘fix populations in place’. A dominant discourse accommodates sedentary bias. It allows for a narrow application of migration as adaptation through ‘return migration’ and ‘diaspora mobilisation’ projects. These target only existing migrants, avoiding new mobility solutions. A minority counter-discourse rejects sedentary bias, emphasising freedom of movement.

[5] Climate Migration is About People, not Numbers (2021)

Durand-Delacre, D., Bettini, G., Nash, S. L., Sterly, H., Gioli, G., Hut, E., Boas, I., Farbotko, C., Sakdapolrak, P., de Bruijn, M., Furlong, B. T., van der Geest, K., Lietaer, S., & Hulme, M. (2021). Climate Migration is about People, not Numbers. In S. Boehm & S. Sullivan (Eds.), Negotiating Climate Change in Crisis. Open Book Publishers. ISBN: 9781800642621. https://doi.org/10.11647/OBP.0265.06

It has become increasingly common to argue that climate change will lead to mass migrations. In this chapter, we examine the large numbers often invoked to underline alarming climate migration narratives. We outline the methodological limitations to their production. We argue for a greater diversity of knowledges of climate migration, rooted in qualitative and mixed methods. We also question the usefulness of numbers to progressive agendas for climate action. Large numbers are used for rhetorical effect to create fear of climate migration. But this approach backfires when they are used to justify security-oriented, anti-migrant agendas. In addition, quantification helps present migration as a management problem. Decisions are then based on meeting quantitative targets, when they should focus on peoples’ needs, rights, and freedoms instead.

[4] Climate Migration Myths (2019)

Boas, I., Farbotko, C., Adams, H., Sterly, H., Bush, S., Geest, K. van der, Wiegel, H., Ashraf, H., Baldwin, A., Bettini, G., Blondin, S., Bruijn, M. de, Durand-Delacre, D., Fröhlich, C., Gioli, G., Guaita, L., Hut, E., Jarawura, F.X., Lamers, M., Lietaer, S., Nash, S.L., Piguet, E., Rothe, D., Sakdapolrak, P., Smith, L., Furlong, B.T., Turhan, E., Warner, J., Zickgraf, C., Black, R., Hulme, M., (2019). Climate migration myths. Nature Climate Change, 9(12), 901–903. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-019-0633-3

Misleading claims about mass migration induced by climate change continue to surface in both academia and policy. This requires a new research agenda on ‘climate mobilities’ that moves beyond simplistic assumptions and more accurately advances knowledge of the nexus between human mobility and climate change.

[3] National baselines for the Sustainable Development Goals assessed in the SDG Index and Dashboards (2017)

Schmidt-Traub, G., Kroll, C., Teksoz, K., Durand-Delacre, D., & Sachs, J. D. (2017). National baselines for the Sustainable Development Goals assessed in the SDG Index and Dashboards. Nature Geoscience, 10(8), 547-555. https://doi.org/10.1038/ngeo2985

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) — agreed in 2015 by all 193 member states of the United Nations and complemented by commitments made in the Paris Agreement — map out a broad spectrum of economic, social and environmental objectives to be achieved by 2030. Reaching these goals will require deep transformations in every country, as well as major efforts in monitoring and measuring progress. Here we introduce the SDG Index and Dashboards as analytical tools for assessing countries’ baselines for the SDGs that can be applied by researchers in the cross-disciplinary analyses required for implementation. The Index and Dashboards synthesize available country-level data for all 17 goals, and for each country estimate the size of the gap towards achieving the SDGs.

[2] SDG Index and Dashboards Report 2017: Global Responsibilities

Sachs, J., Schmidt-Traub, G., Kroll, C., Durand-Delacre, D., and Teksoz, K. (2017) SDG Index and Dashboards Report 2017. Global Responsibilities. International Spillovers in Achieving the Goals. New York: Bertelsmann Stiftung and Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN). http://www.sdgindex.org/

The 2017 edition of the SDG Index and Dashboards Report provides a report card for country performance on the historic Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The annual report shows how leaders can deliver on their promise and it urges countries not to lose the momentum for important reforms.

[1] SDG Index and Dashboards Report 2016

Sachs, J., Schmidt-Traub, G., Kroll, C., Durand-Delacre, D., and Teksoz, K. (2016) Sustainable Development Goals Index and Dashboards – Global Report. New York: Bertelsmann Stiftung and Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN). http://www.sdgindex.org/

The 2016 edition of the SDG Index and Dashboards Report introduced the unofficial SDG Index and Dashboards and summarized the preliminary results. The report created for the first time a measure of the SDG starting point for 2015 at the country level. It was created to help every country identify priorities for early action, understand the key implementation challenges and identify the gaps that must be closed in order to achieve the SDGs by 2030.