Through quantitative analysis, GIS mapping, case studies and field interviews, the Climate Change and African Stability (CCAPS) program aims to identify where and how climate change could undermine state stability, to define strategies for building African state capacity, and to assess global development aid responses. The CCAPS team seeks to engage Africa policy communities in the United States, Africa, and elsewhere as a critical part of its research. The CCAPS program works in three main areas:

  • Climate Change and Conflict

    CCAPS examines the spatial and temporal relationship between climate change vulnerability and patterns of conflict. Research focuses on: 

    Climate Vulnerability: Examines the environmental, population, socio-economic, and governance drivers of climate security vulnerability in Africa.
    Climate Projection Model: Regional climate model generates mid-century climate projections to produce more near-term data.
    Social Conflict Analysis Database: New database analyzes various forms of social and political unrest in Africa and Latin America.
    Armed Conflict Location and Events Dataset: Provides real-time tracking of the actions of opposition groups, governments, and militias continent-wide.

    Complex Emergencies: Explores how conflict, environmental, economic, and demographic instabilities join to form different types of complex emergencies.


  • Governance

    CCAPS examines the role of government institutions in mitigating or aggravating social stresses and other impacts that climate change could have on political stability in Africa. Research focuses on:

    Constitutional Design: Explores how political institutions could buffer against conflict and other impacts of climate shocks.
    Democratic Governance: Assesses the effectiveness of democracy promotion in Africa as a way of building resilient societies and responsive governments.
    Metropolitan Governance: Assesses the capacity of metropolitan governance systems for building resilience to climate change, including disaster preparedness and response.
    Disaster Response: Examines the capacity of countries to respond to natural disasters, particularly those that may increase due to climate change.

  • International Aid

    CCAPS examines the impact of foreign aid interventions in Africa. If effectively coordinated and implemented, aid for climate change adaptation should contribute to crisis prevention and adaptation and reduce the need for global assistance. Research focuses on:

    Adaptation Aid: New geocoded, climate coded dataset tracks adaptation aid, analyzes aid distribution, and assesses effectiveness of adaptation projects in targeting climate security risks.
    Aid and Conflict: Explores the relationship between foreign aid and conflict control, including how much aid warring parties control and when aid may lead to more or less severe conflict.