Who is adapting and how? Identifying actors and roles in climate change adaptation

Bhadwal Suruchi with Multiple Authors
Nature Climate Change

An assessment of the global progress in climate change adaptation is urgently needed. Despite a rising awareness that adaptation should involve diverse societal actors and a shared sense of responsibility,little is known about the types of actors involved and their roles—particularly between state and non-state actors and different regions. Based on a large n-structured analysis of case studies, we show that, although individuals or households are the most prominent actors implementing adaptation, they are the least involved in institutional responses, particularly in the Global South. Governments are most often involved in planning and civil society in coordinating responses. Our findings show that state actors often do not deliver the formal and institutional adaptation required to organise cross-actor collaboration and enable more transformative adaptation. Civil society organisations and individual actors may compensate for that lack, but with limited capacity. These findings should inform more effective future adaptation governance.

Climate Change Adaptation, Climate risks, Global Adaptation Mapping Initiative, SDGs