The University of Arizona is recognized nationally and internationally as a leader in the science of adaptation to climate change, and associated research and outreach to understand climate change, its observed and potential impacts, and possible responses.
Climate change and rural-urban migration: the case of the Tuareg in Niger
Climate change is viewed as an emerging threat to the already-precarious livelihoods of pastoralists in the West African Sahel. Periodic conflict and escalating insecurity in the pastoral zone, in combination with climate change, inherent climatic variability, and economic and political processes appear to have made pursuit of a traditional pastoral livelihood increasingly difficult. While there has been much research devoted to understanding pastoralists and pastoral livelihood systems in rural areas, there has been scant attention paid to changes in push/pull factors determining long-term migration accompanied by the phenomenon of pastoralist households transforming their livelihood systems – which frequently still include livestock - in order to live in an urban environment. By means of ten months of field research, buttressed by more than 25 years of experience in the region, I am exploring the decision-making environment and livelihood strategies of urbanized Tuareg pastoralists in Niamey, Niger.