Special Issue "On the Socioeconomic and Political Outcomes of Global Climate Change"


A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2012)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Rafael Reuveny

School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA), Indiana University, East 10th Street, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA
Interests: international political economy with emphasis on globalization; rise and fall of major powers; political conflict and how it interacts with international trade, democracy, and the environment; sustainable development; Middle East political economy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The intergovernmental panel on climate change (IPCC) expects that climate change will accelerate in this century, assuming business as usual climate change policy. By now, there have been several attempts to develop a global mitigation plan, but they have failed. It seems mitigation will remain an illusionary target in the short to medium run, if not forever. And so that “dreadful” word, adaptation, which we have all hoped will not take the driver seat, becomes for all practical purposes the only viable option to deal with climate change. It is within this larger picture that I invite the academic, practitioner, and the policy communities to address the question of this special issue.

Given the enormity of the expected effects of climate change on the environment worldwide -- including sea level rising and inundation; arable land degradation; changes in precipitation; changes in the patterns of the seasons; salinazation, drying, and dwindling fresh water resources; and more intense weather-related natural disasters such as windstorms, extreme precipitation, floods, droughts, heat waves, extreme temperatures, infestations, spread of diseases, and wet landslides – we must wonder what could be the sociopolitical outcomes within and across countries worldwide. The issue has received some attention in the literature, but it should be addressed more systematically if we are to learn to live with climate change.

Unlike the natural sciences, where we may conduct controlled experiments, in the macro social sciences the only meaningful laboratory is reality. In addressing the question of this issue, out best bet is to look for hints in the current and historical reality. If certain climate change-induced environmental effects have led to some sociopolitical outcomes, we may expect more of them in the future, as climate change accelerates.

I invite empirical contributions. The idea is to develop research questions that are linked to empirical data and show how they have linked to some or all of the environmental outcomes that are said to be associated with climate change.

The focus should be empirical, though the empirical method could take any desired form, including (but not limited to), detailed case studies, comparative case studies, qualitative analyses of data, statistical analyses of all types, simulations of analytical models calibrated to the real world, interviews of policymakers and stake holders, content analysis of media and other sources in the public domain, and surveys of various relevant stake holders.

Prof. Dr. Rafael Reuveny
Guest Editor


  • internal, within country, human displacement
  • international, between countries, legal human migration
  • international illegal immigration
  • immigration policy (e.g., quotas, border control, deportation, amnesty)
  • international refugees and asylum seeking
  • internal political stability and discontent
  • international political stability and discontent
  • the scope and content of democracy and/or autocracy
  • conflict resolution and peace plans
  • the domestic economy
  • international economic interdependence
  • global distribution of income and other economic aspects of the North-South gap
  • the welfare state
  • the onset, duration, geographical and temporal distributions, and frequency of civil wars, rebellions, and insurgencies
  • the onset, duration, geographical and temporal distributions, and frequency of international wars and military disputes
  • the incidence, severity, and geographical and temporal distributions of terrorism
  • attitudes toward religion and God, and the role of humanity versus nature in a world subject to climate change
  • the role of religion in international and domestic relations
  • international alliances, agreements, and other forms of political cooperation
  • international polarity and polarization
  • global organizations such as the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary fund, and World Trade Organization
  • regional forms of economic and political integration
  • international economic and political methods of influence
  • ongoing adaptation for climate change across the world in various areas related to the above issues, including national security

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Displaying article 1-4
p. 958-994
by , , ,  and
Sustainability 2012, 4(5), 958-994; doi:10.3390/su4050958
Received: 20 February 2012 / Revised: 17 March 2012 / Accepted: 26 April 2012 / Published: 10 May 2012
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p. 917-932
Sustainability 2012, 4(5), 917-932; doi:10.3390/su4050917
Received: 1 February 2012 / Revised: 25 April 2012 / Accepted: 25 April 2012 / Published: 7 May 2012
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p. 1416-1451
Sustainability 2011, 3(9), 1416-1451; doi:10.3390/su3091416
Received: 1 August 2011 / Accepted: 12 August 2011 / Published: 31 August 2011
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p. 1003-1021
Sustainability 2011, 3(7), 1003-1021; doi:10.3390/su3071003
Received: 24 June 2011 / Accepted: 30 June 2011 / Published: 14 July 2011
Show/Hide Abstract | Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (402 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
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Last update: 4 March 2014

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