Emerging Political Considerations in Climate Change Adaptation

  • Leigh Glover
  • Mikael GranbergEmail author


This chapter provides an overview of key influences on the development of adaptation (both conceptually and as a practice) that entail the political. It begins with an account of the interplay of different political and associated elements that are shaping the development of adaptation in what is described as a ‘complex arena’. Adaptation politics are taken as political values, processes, interests and outcomes involving states, civil society and corporations. Following this, we examine the central place of scientific knowledge in the adaptation discourse and the critiques of, and challenges against, its apparent hegemony. Neoliberalism is recognised as a major socio-economic force in global politics and its influence on adaptation is examined. Indigenous peoples are now receiving greater attention in adaptation and this is another emerging political consideration shaping policy, practices and programmes, including the recognition of traditional and indigenous knowledge and the calls for community-based adaptation. Commons are also described in this context. Closing the chapter is a discussion of the role of the state in adaptation, including the essential reasons for its involvement and the implications therein.


Policymaking Neoliberalism Planning Scientific knowledge Technocracy Traditional knowledge 


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© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Centre for Societal Risk ResearchKarlstad UniversityKarlstadSweden
  2. 2.The Centre for Natural Hazards and Disaster Science (CNDS)Uppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden

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