A Climate Mobility Framework for Evaluating Equity Outcomes in Climate Resilience Decision Making Grant

A Climate Mobility Framework for Evaluating Equity Outcomes in Climate Resilience Decision Making .


  • Sea level rise is increasing extreme sea level events, including high-tide and storm-associated floods, which will drive migration and displacement of residents within coastal communities. Recent studies have focused on the macro-economic implications of climate-driven migration and displacement, but there remains a large research gap in our understanding of the multiplicities of climate related movement, or climate mobilities within a given locality. Mobility considerations encompass the social and economic disparities within coastal communities that may impede the ability of residents to cope with climate migration outcomes. There is a pressing need to understand local dynamics of climate migration as experienced across the spectrum of vulnerability to highlight equity considerations in sea level rise adaptation planning. The purpose of this research is to examine the intersection of sea level rise related exposure risk and socio-economic vulnerability and their combined impact on potential future climate migration outcomes through the creation of a novel climate mobility framework. The climate mobility framework distinguishes between four sets of communities - stable, migrating, displaced, and trapped- to assess potential inequities within sea level rise adaptation planning given deep uncertainty and competing societal demands for funding. This research has three primary objectives: (1) develop a conceptual framework that considers the multiplicities of sea level rise related movement, (2) test this framework among current residents of Miami-Dade County, FL though a mixed methods approach that includes spatial analysis and primary data collection through interviews and surveys, and (3) facilitate a process of co-production with government officials and community leaders to understand how the framework can advance equitable decision making for future climate resilience policy. This research employs publicly accessible datasets such as the U.S Census American Community Survey to develop socio-economic indicators of vulnerability, and integrates novel measures of exposure risk such as the Parallel Raster Inundation Model, or PRIMo, which provides high resolution regional compound flooding assessments for robust decision making. The climate mobility framework should be transferable to coastal communities in the United States and other societies where property rights and land-use tenure exist. The conclusions and proposed solutions that emerge from all phases of this research are likely to be relevant for coastal communities globally.This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

date/time interval

  • February 15, 2021 - December 31, 2022

administered by

sponsor award ID

  • 2049887