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Expert views of climate change adaptation in the Maldives

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Abstract

This essay assesses the “Integrating Climate Change Risks into Resilient Island Planning in the Maldives” Program, or ICCR, a four-year $9.3 million adaptation project supported by the Least Developed Countries Fund, Maldivian Government and the United Nations Development Program. The essay elaborates on the types of challenges that arise as a low-income country tries to utilize international development assistance to adapt to climate change. Based primarily on a series of semi-structured research interviews with Maldivian experts, discussed benefits to the ICCR include improving physical resilience by deploying “soft” infrastructure, institutional resilience by training policymakers, and community resilience by strengthening assets. Challenges include ensuring that adaptation efforts are sufficient to reduce vulnerability, lack of coordination, and the values and attitudes of business and community leaders.

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Acknowledgments

Three anonymous reviewers provided outstanding suggestions for revision which have greatly improved the quality of the essay. Furthermore, the author is appreciative to the Centre on Asia and Globalisation and the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy for some of the financial assistance needed to conduct the research interviews, field research, and travel for this project. The author is also extremely grateful to the Singaporean Ministry of Education for an Academic Research Fund Grant which has supported elements of the work reported here. Those wishing to read a longer exploration of the ICCR are invited to read Sovacool (2012). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Centre on Asia and Globalisation, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, or Singaporean Ministry of Education.

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Correspondence to Benjamin K. Sovacool.

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Sovacool, B.K. Expert views of climate change adaptation in the Maldives. Climatic Change 114, 295–300 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-011-0392-2

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10584-011-0392-2

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