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Loss and Damage from Climate Change

Concepts, Methods and Policy Options

  • Book
  • Open Access
  • © 2019

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  • First comprehensive stocktaking exercise highlighting the state of the art of research, political debate and policy options on Loss and Damage and the debate on risks "beyond adaptation"
  • Articulates principles and definitions of Loss and Damage, and highlights ethical and normative issues central to the discourse
  • Identifies practical and evidence-based policy and implementation options for its operationalization

Part of the book series: Climate Risk Management, Policy and Governance (CRMPG)

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Table of contents (22 chapters)

  1. Setting the Stage: Key Concepts, Challenges and Insights

  2. Critical Issues Shaping the Discourse

  3. Research and Practice: Reviewing Methods and Tools

  4. Geographic Perspectives and Cases


About this book

This book provides an authoritative insight on the Loss and Damage discourse by highlighting state-of-the-art research and policy linked to this discourse and articulating its multiple concepts, principles and methods. Written by leading researchers and practitioners, it identifies practical and evidence-based policy options to inform the discourse and climate negotiations.

With climate-related risks on the rise and impacts being felt around the globe has come the recognition that climate mitigation and adaptation may not be enough to manage the effects from anthropogenic climate change. This recognition led to the creation of the Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage in 2013, a climate policy mechanism dedicated to dealing with climate-related effects in highly vulnerable countries that face severe constraints and limits to adaptation.  Endorsed in 2015 by the Paris Agreement and effectively considered a third pillar of international climate policy, debate and research on Loss and Damage continues to gain enormous traction. Yet, concepts, methods and tools as well as directions for policy and implementation have remained contested and vague.

Suitable for researchers, policy-advisors, practitioners and the interested public, the book furthermore:

•         discusses the political, legal, economic and institutional dimensions of the issue
•         highlights normative questions central to the discourse

•         provides a focus on climate risks and climate risk management.

•         presents salient case studies from around the world.


“Loss and Damage from Climate Change is a very welcome addition to the continuously growing body of work on L&D. More than a review of the state-of-the-art, the book also acts as a positive heuristic for L&D scholarship, pointing the way forward for new comers and seasoned veterans alike. The editors and contributing authors are all to be commended for producing such a comprehensive, thought provoking and accessible guide … .” (Chad S. Boda, Climatic Change, Vol. 156, 2019)

“Though highly specialized, the text is well written and stands as the best compendium yet written on the topic. … Recommended. Graduate students through faculty and professionals.” (R. E. O'Connor, Choice, Vol. 57 (2), October, 2019)

Editors and Affiliations

  • International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Laxenburg, Austria

    Reinhard Mechler, Thomas Schinko, JoAnne Linnerooth-Bayer

  • Deltares, Delft, The Netherlands

    Laurens M. Bouwer

  • London School of Economics, London, UK

    Swenja Surminski

Bibliographic Information

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