Should They Stay or Should They Go? Climate Migrants and Local Conflicts

50 Pages Posted: 26 Mar 2018

See all articles by Valentina Bosetti

Valentina Bosetti

Bocconi University; CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change

Cristina Cattaneo

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici

Giovanni Peri

University of California, Davis - Department of Economics

Date Written: March 2018

Abstract

There is extensive evidence that higher temperature increases the probability of local conflict. There is also some evidence that emigration represents an important margin of adaptation to climatic change. In this paper we analyse whether migration influences the link between warming and conflicts by either attenuating the effects in countries of origin and/or by spreading them to countries of destination. We find that in countries where emigration propensity, as measured by past diaspora, was higher, increases in temperature had a smaller effects on conflict probability, consistent with emigration functioning as "escape valve" for local tensions. We find no evidence that climate-induced migration increased the probability of conflict in receiving countries.

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Suggested Citation

Bosetti, Valentina and Cattaneo, Cristina and Peri, Giovanni, Should They Stay or Should They Go? Climate Migrants and Local Conflicts (March 2018). NBER Working Paper No. w24447. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3149293

Valentina Bosetti (Contact Author)

Bocconi University

Via Gobbi 5
Milan, 20136
Italy

CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Cristina Cattaneo

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici ( email )

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Giovanni Peri

University of California, Davis - Department of Economics ( email )

One Shields Drive
Davis, CA 95616-8578
United States
530-752-3033 (Phone)
530-752-9382 (Fax)

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