A flurry of extreme weather events, together with projections that grow more somber with every new scientific advance, have dramatically highlighted the need to respond more effectively to the threats already upon humankind. In the midst of a rapidly expanding global adaptation agenda, it is of primary importance to get adaptation and its constituent parts right, in order to generate the most appropriate and effective interventions. Reacting to events after they occur is no longer sufficient; we increasingly need to anticipate and reduce the suffering and the enormously damaging impacts coming events will cause. This book addresses a major gap in adaptation efforts to date by pointing to the vital role that an understanding of population dynamics and an extensive use of demographic data have in developing pre-emptive and effective adaptation policies and practices.
Politics and an oversimplified understanding of demographic dynamics have long kept population issues out of serious discussions in the framework of climate negotiations. Within adaptation actions, however, this is beginning to change, and this volume is intended to provide a framework for taking that change forward, towards better, more evidence-based adaptation. It provides key concepts linking demography and adaptation, data foundations and techniques for analyzing climate vulnerability, as well as case studies where these concepts and analyses illuminate who is vulnerable and how to help build their resilience.