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migration

Low-carbon growth: the only sustainable way to overcome world poverty

Nicholas Stern's picture

The two great challenges of the 21st century are the battle against poverty and the management of climate change.  On both we must act strongly now and expect to continue that action over the coming decades.  Our response to climate change and poverty reduction will define our generation.  If we fail on either one of them, we will fail on the other. The current crisis in the financial markets and the economic downturn is new and immediate, although some years in the making. All three challenges require urgent and decisive action, and all three can be overcome together through determined and concerted efforts across the world. But whilst recognising that we must respond, and respond strongly, to all three challenges, we should also recognise the opportunities: a well-constructed response to one can provide great direct advantages and opportunities for the other.

A dire situation in Bangladesh

Nate Engle's picture
Photo by Mohon Mondal
Photo: © Mohon Mondal, Local Environment Development and Agricultural Research Society, Bangladesh.

Estimates assessing how many people will be displaced or forced to migrate because of climate change impacts are wide-ranging. But anecdotes of where climate-related migration is already taking place are beginning to crowd newspapers, radio and television programs, and various internet sources. Other than the low-lying islands which could be completely consumed by rising ocean waters, perhaps nowhere else in the world are these stories more pronounced than in Bangladesh.

Moving away from home... and away from poverty?

Kathleen Beegle's picture

Finding routes out of poverty remains a key issue for households and policy makers alike. A long term vision of development in Africa and elsewhere suggests that poverty reduction is associated with intergenerational mobility out of rural areas and agriculture, and into urban non-agricultural settings. To respond to new economic opportunities, people must be geographically mobile. Constraints to their movement may in fact impede economic growth.

Consumption smoothing via migration and remittances

Dilip Ratha's picture

Atlanta Fed Research Economist Federico Mandelman and Andrei Zlate, a PhD candidate in economics at Boston College, have prepared a paper analyzing the role that of migration and remittances during the business cycle. The data they present indicate that when the U.S. economy has outperformed Mexico’s, there were usually more attempted illegal crossings into the United States.

Helping people escape from poor geography or poor governance - from World Development Report 2009

Dilip Ratha's picture

World Development Report 2009, the World Bank's annual flagship, has devoted a significant chapter to the migration of people. “Throughout history, mobility has helped people escape the tyranny of poor geography or poor governance,” argues Indermit Gill, the lead author, “...mobile people and products form the cornerstone of inclusive, sustainable globalization.”


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