Drivers of Migration in the Trans-Mediterranean Region: The Likely Role of Climate Change and Resource Security in the Geopolitical Context

  • Luca Caporaso
  • Monia SantiniEmail author
  • Sergio Noce
  • Alberto de Sanctis
  • Lucio Caracciolo
  • Marta Antonelli


Human migration, referring to people choosing to move not just because of a direct danger of persecution or death but also to improve their lives, is expected to grow rapidly in the near future. In this context, the recent Trans-Mediterranean region raised particular interest for the variety of migration routes and of institutional, social, cultural and economic issues. Further, the region is affected by many threats due to the interactions of climate change vulnerability, water scarcity and land degradation with the needs of increasingly urbanized populations and environmentally-intensive food production. The aim of this study is contributing to deepen the knowledge about the potential nexus among climate, geopolitics and migration across the Trans-Mediterranean region, through a comprehensive analysis, based on well consolidated and scientifically sound methods and data, about the climate-related hazards and their consequences on water and food availability. The findings suggest that the study region is increasingly facing a general warming and a decrease of water availability. The climate regime and hydrological cycle influence the agriculture, so that yields of the key energy and protein crops considered (wheat, maize, rice, soybean) seem highly endangered leading to an increase in irrigation needs posing additional pressures on the water sector. Building resilience for water resources and food production systems to climate change becomes thus crucial for the whole Trans-Mediterranean region. But while climate adaptation measures have to be implemented rapidly through agricultural practices, climate change mitigation cannot be neglected: in this context, the SDG agenda can provide robust foundations.


Climate change Migration Food Water Geopolitics 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luca Caporaso
    • 1
  • Monia Santini
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sergio Noce
    • 1
  • Alberto de Sanctis
    • 2
  • Lucio Caracciolo
    • 2
  • Marta Antonelli
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Division on Impacts on Agriculture, Forests and Ecosystem Services (IAFES)Foundation Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change (CMCC)ViterboItaly
  2. 2.MACROGEO S.R.L.RomeItaly
  3. 3.Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition (BCFN)ParmaItaly
  4. 4.Foundation Euro-Mediterranean Centre on Climate ChangeLecceItaly

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